The deadline of July 15 to report your crops is almost here. Our office is very busy now with producers reporting their crops. To report your crops timely and avoid late filing fees you must contact our office immediately for an appointment. If you wish to pick up your maps and take them home to mark your information; then return them to our office for loading now is the time. Don’t miss the opportunity to report and file your plantings for free. After July 15 you will pay a minimum fee of $46 per farm to report. Certification is a requirement of most USDA program to receive benefits. Call us today to schedule your appointment or order your maps.
Here are some agri-business notes from the Huron and Erie County Farm Service Agency:
FSA committee nomination period now open: The nomination period for the Huron/Erie FSA county committee began on June 15. Nomination forms must be postmarked or received in the Huron/Erie County FSA Office by close of business on Aug. 1.
County Committees are unique to FSA and allow producers to have a voice on federal farm program implementation at the local level. To be eligible to serve on the FSA county committee, a person must participate or cooperate in an agency administered program, be eligible to vote in a county committee election and reside in the Local Administrative Area (LAA) where they are nominated. All producers, including women, minority and beginning farmers and producers are encouraged to participate in the nomination and election process.
This year, nominations and elections will be held in Huron County LAA 1, which includes the townships of Greenfield, Lyme, Norwich, Peru, Ridgefield and Sherman. An election will also be held for Erie County LAA 5 which encompasses the townships of Berlin, Florence, Milan, and Vermilion. Producers may nominate themselves or others as candidates. Organizations representing minority and women farmers and producers may also nominate candidates. To become a nominee, eligible individuals must sign form FSA-669A.
The form and more information about county committee elections is available online at: www.fsa.usda.gov/elections or at your FSA County office. Elected county committee members serve a three-year term and are responsible for making decisions on FSA disaster, conservation, commodity and price support programs, as well as other important federal farm program issues. The Huron/Erie County Committee consists
of two members from Erie County and three members from Huron County. FSA will mail election ballots to eligible voters beginning Nov. 6. Ballots are due back in the Huron/Erie County Office by mail or in person no later than Dec. 4. All newly elected county committee members and alternates will take office Jan. 1. For more information about county committees, responsibilities of serving on the county committee, and voting eligibility please contact our office or visit www.fsa.usda.gov/elections.
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Enrollment period for safety net coverage ends Aug. 1: Producers on farms with base acres under the safety net programs established by the 2014 Farm Bill, known as the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) or Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs, can visit FSA county offices to sign contracts and enroll for the 2017 crop year. The enrollment period will continue until Aug. 1, 2017. Since shares and ownership of a farm can change year-to- year, producers on the farm must enroll by signing a contract each program year. If a farm is not enrolled during the 2017 enrollment period, the producers on that farm will not be eligible for financial assistance from the ARC or PLC programs for the 2017 crop should crop prices or farm revenues fall below the historical price or revenue benchmarks established by the program.
Producers who made their elections in 2015 must still enroll during the 2017 enrollment period. The ARC and PLC programs were authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill and offer a safety net to agricultural producers when there is a substantial drop in prices or revenues for covered commodities. The deadlines to enroll in this program are set in stone. Failure to enroll timely will cause you to miss out on benefits for your operation. For more information, or to make your appointment to sign in contact our office today.
Diana Strouse is the county executive director for the Huron and Erie County Farm Service Agency. For more information, call the agency at 419-668-4113.