Finally Some Good News for CRP

The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is still on shaky ground, but after many setbacks it's finally gotten some good news: The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture has acquired $2 billion for CRP by renegotiating crop insurance contracts. It's not a permanent solution to the key problems dogging the program (ethanol production comes to mind), but it'll certainly help.

According to the USDA, the $2 billion will go toward the first CRP enrollment since 2006, and makes good on a promise made by USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack earlier this year.

"The USDA's announcement is going to give it the funding base needed to help Secretary Vilsack live up to his pledge to keep CRP enrollment at or near 32 million acres," Pheasants Forever vice president of government affairs Dave Nomsen told Ohio Outdoor News. "This will allow it to accept a substantially larger pool of acres and contracts [than could have been retained or enrolled] prior to the decision about the funding. Back in February, when Vilsack made his pledge at Pheasant Fest, we were looking at a general sign-up of between 1.5 and 2 million acres. Now it may be upwards of double that amountnearly 4 million acres or so."

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2 Responses to Finally Some Good News for CRP

KyleW wrote:
July 21, 2010

@Guy As a small government guy, I appreciate your sentiments; however, when one considers the benefits of CRP--wildlife production (Delta Waterfowl says 15 million pheasants and 2.2 million ducks hatch in CRP lands annually), prevention of soil erosion and stream pollution, flood mitigation, carbon dioxide absorption and more--I believe it justifies the expense. There are plenty of government programs that ought to be reined in, but CRP deserves adequate funding.

Guy wrote:
July 20, 2010

As much as I enjoy hunting pheasants on CRP in North Dakota. We can't afford to continue to run on our grandchildren's money. CRP is probably one of many programs that we can't afford if we are going to get our fiscal house in order!