USDA: Conservation payments up and running after shutdown delays
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WASHINGTON, Oct. 29, 2013 - Farmers waiting for their Conservation Security or Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) payments should receive them in the coming days, USDA says. The shutdown of the federal government delayed some of the $907 million in payments from USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to CSP participants who have enrolled millions of acres to improve the overall conservation performance of their operations.
"Farmers and ranchers are stewards of our natural resources, and their efforts show the value of conservation - working farms, ranches, and forests can provide food and fiber as well as clean water and valuable wildlife habitat," NRCS Chief Jason Weller said. "We're happy to have our staff back in the field where they can continue working with farmers and ranchers to put conservation practices on the ground."
The payments are part of a financial assistance program for producers who are already established conservation stewards and are implementing additional conservation activities for higher, farm-level benefits on their property. NRCS says this work leads to cleaner water and air, healthier soil and enhanced wildlife habitat, while also supporting rural economies.
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