Here’s a heads up on some important dates for agriculture-related internships, insuring your operation against forage losses due to lack of rainfall, or commenting on changes to Conservation Standards that could impact funding for your operation.
DEADLINE: November 15, 2019
The OneUSDA Internship Program is for students interested in careers in agriculture, natural resources and rural development. You’ll get on-the-job training and mentoring, and become part of the Federal Pathways program, a good first step to a job with a federal agency. Visit the website to learn more and to apply.
Pasture, Rangeland and Forage Insurance Program
DEADLINE: November 15, 2019
This program helps protect your operation from forage losses due to lack of rainfall and can cover increased costs for feed, destocking, and more. You select a coverage level (70 to 90%) and 2-month periods when precipitation is important for forage growth for their operation. If precipitation falls below the indexed level for your area, you will automatically receive payments without have to apply or notify anyone. Here are answers to Frequently Asked Questions. To learn more and to purchase insurance, click here to find an agent.
Comment on Proposed Changes to NRCS Conservation Practices
DEADLINE: November 22, 2019
If you are working with the NRCS on Conservation Planning and/or you receive financial assistance to enhance your operation, you know that Conservation Practices guide how things need to be done. They’re the “Best Management Practices.” Conservation Practices are developed at the Federal level and then individual states often adjust them for local conditions. You can see all the practices here and see your own state’s modified versions here.
The NRCS is proposing changes to 13 of these standards. The Federal Register Notice lists the practices and summarizes the changes and includes a button you can press to submit a comment. You can read each of the practices here. While most of the changes address formatting and style, I did compare the “Obstruction Removal” practice to the current version. It looks like the proposed version no longer specifically mentions fence removal, something that can be important to any operation trying to implement a new grazing plan. It is unclear whether the new version is more generic on purpose or that they mean to remove this from the practice. Please feel free to comment on this or any of the other practices. Remember, your participation ensures that the NRCS provides the best possible support to farmers and ranchers. Please feel free to share your thoughts or suggestions with the On Pasture community. And if you know about other important deadlines, let me know and I’ll share them.
Thanks for reading!