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May 23 deadline to apply for Agriculture Conservation Easement Program

By Staff | May 20, 2014

(NRCS) — Iowa landowners interested in participating in the Agriculture Conservation Easement Program (ACEP), formerly known as the Wetland Reserve Program, must apply by May 23 to be considered for 2014 program funding, according to the Iowa state office of the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service.

The Wetland Reserve Easement option of the new ACEP is a voluntary program that offers landowners the opportunity to protect, restore and enhance wetlands on their properties.

NRCS provides technical and financial support to help landowners with their wetland restoration efforts.

By entering into ACEP easements, landowners receive CSR-based land values — while retaining ownership of their land — in exchange for restoring marginal agricultural land to shallow wetland areas.

Accepted applications will be ranked according to the offered site’s potential for protecting and enhancing habitat for migratory birds, fish and wildlife, and water quality.

Signing an application for ACEP does not bind the landowner to an easement; rather it indicates interest in the program and allows NRCS to rank and develop an easement value to offer the landowner should the site rank highly.

To sign up for ACEP, or to get more information about this and other NRCS programs, call the Fort Dodge NRCS office at (515) 573-4411, or contact an NRCS office located in your county’s USDA Service Center.

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