Agwire: Election underway for the 2018 County Committee

An election for USDA’s Farm Service Agency’s Osage County Committee is underway. Every eligible producer is encouraged to participate in these elections because FSA county committees are a link between the agricultural community and USDA. The 2018 election in Osage County will be conducted for the representative of Local Administrative Area No. 2, the northwest corner of the county west of U.S. Highway 75, and north of 237th Street.

County committee members are a critical component of FSA operations. Committees should be comprised of members who reflect the diversity of producers involved in production agriculture in Osage County. This means that producers representing under served groups or communities should be on the committee to speak on behalf of their constituency.

Under served producers are beginning, women and other minority farmers and ranchers and land owners or operators who have limited resources. Other minority groups including Native American and Alaska Natives, persons under the poverty level, and persons that have disabilities are also considered under served.

County committee election ballots were to be mailed to eligible voters on Nov. 5, 2018. The last day to return completed ballots to the Osage County USDA service center is Dec. 3, 2018.

For more information on eligibility to serve on FSA county committees, see www.fsa.usda.gov/elections.

USDA launches market facilitation program

USDA launched the trade mitigation package aimed at assisting farmers suffering from damage due to unjustified trade retaliation by foreign nations. Producers of certain commodities can now sign up for the market facilitation program.

FSA will administer the market facilitation program to provide payments to corn (fresh and processed), cotton, dairy, hog, sorghum, soybean (fresh and processed), wheat, shelled almond, and fresh sweet cherry producers. An announcement about further payments will be made in the coming months, if warranted.

The sign-up period for the market facilitation program runs through Jan. 15, 2019. The program provides payments to producers of eligible commodities who have been significantly impacted by actions of foreign governments resulting in the loss of traditional exports. Eligible producers should apply after harvest is complete, as payments will only be issued once production is reported.

A payment will be issued on 50 percent of the producer’s total production, multiplied by the market facilitation program rate for a specific commodity. A second payment period, if warranted, will be determined by the USDA.

For a list of initial market facilitation program payments rates, view the MFP Fact Sheet.

MFP payments are capped per person or legal entity as follows: A combined $125,000 for eligible crop commodities; combined $125,000 for dairy production and hogs; combined $125,000 for fresh sweet cherries and almonds.

Applicants must also have an average adjusted gross income for tax years 2014, 2015, and 2016 of less than $900,000. Applicants must also comply with the provisions of the highly erodible land and wetland conservation regulations.

Reminders: 2019 acreage reporting dates

To comply with FSA program eligibility requirements, all producers are encouraged to visit the Osage County FSA office to file an accurate crop certification report by the applicable deadline. The following acreage reporting dates are applicable for Osage County:

  • Dec. 15, 2018 – Small grains (wheat, oats, barley, rye, triticale, etc.)
  • Jan. 2, 2019 – Honey

The following exceptions apply to the above acreage reporting dates:

  • If the crop has not been planted by the above acreage reporting date, then the acreage must be reported no later than 15 calendar days after planting is completed.
  • If a producer acquires additional acreage after the above acreage reporting date, then the acreage must be reported no later than 30 calendars days after purchase or acquiring the lease. Appropriate documentation must be provided to the county office.

Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program policy holders should note the acreage reporting date for NAP covered crops is the earlier of the dates listed above or 15 calendar days before grazing or harvesting of the crop begins.

For more information, contact the Osage  County FSA office at 785-828-4631 or 115 W. 17th St., Lyndon,

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Contact us: Osage County News | P.O. Box 62, Lyndon, KS 66451 | [email protected] | 785-828-4994 | Powered by Osage County, Kansas