DC, February 10, 2004 (ENS): The U.S. Department
of Agriculture (USDA) has provided almost $2 million
in Emergency Conservation Program funding for nine states,
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman announced Monday.
The funds will be given to Alabama, Colorado, Idaho,
Missouri, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee
"These funds will help farmers and ranchers rehabilitate
farmland damaged by various natural disasters throughout
the country," Veneman said. "We are able to
provide this funding as a result of unused allocations
from other states."
The Emergency Conservation Program (ECP) provides funds
for technical assistance to help producers remove debris
from farmland, restore fences and conservation structures,
provide water for livestock in drought situations and
grade and shape farmland damaged by a natural disaster.
The funding to states is as follows: $135,678 for flood
damage in Alabama, $600,000 for drought in Colorado,
$297,000 for drought in Idaho, $146,000 for tornado
damage in Missouri, $20,000 for tornado damage in Mississippi,
$42,500 for tornado damage in Oklahoma, $330,000 for
drought in South Dakota, $39,800 for tornado and flood
damage in Tennessee and $331,600 for drought in Utah.
The program is administered by USDA's Farm Service
Agency (FSA) state and county committees.
Locally elected county committees are authorized to
implement the Emergency Conservation Program for all
disasters except drought, which is authorized at the
national office of the FSA.
The ECP funds may, in some cases, be used to cover
requests already approved for which funding was previously
unavailable. Eligible producers will receive cost-share
assistance of up to 64 percent of the cost of the approved
practice, as determined by FSA county committees.
Copyright Environment News Service (ENS) 2004. All Rights