Helps agricultural producers, their lenders, and other persons directly affected by the actions of USDA resolve disputes. Through mediation, a trained, impartial person (mediator) helps participants review their conflicts, identify options, and agree on solutions. Mediation is a valuable tool for settling disputes in many different USDA program areas. These include farm loans, farm and conservation programs, wetland determinations, rural water loan programs, grazing on national forest system lands, and pesticides usage. The program is authorized through 2005 by the Agricultural Credit Act of 1987 (Pub. L. 100-233) (7 U.S.C. 5101 (5104), as amended by the Grain Standards and Warehouse Improvement Act of 2000 (Pub. L. 106-372).
A type of farm ownership loan made to eligible applicants to finance a portion of a real estate purchase. The statutory authority for beginning farmer down payment loans is section 310E of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (Pub. L. 87- 128) (7 U.S.C. 1935).
Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) provides financial assistance to producers or entities that deliver eligible biomass material to designated biomass conversion facilities for use as heat, power, biobased products or biofuels. Initial assistance will be for the Collection, Harvest, Storage and Transportation (CHST) costs associated with the delivery of eligible materials.
Provides a voluntary program to agricultural producers to help them safeguard environmentally sensitive land. Producers enrolled in CRP plant long-term, resource-conserving covers to improve the quality of water, control soil erosion, and enhance wildlife habitat. In return, CCC provides participants rental payments and cost-share assistance. Contract duration is between 10 and 15 years. CRP was authorized by section 1231 of the Food Security Act of 1985, as amended (Pub. L. 99-198)(16 U.S.C. 3831, et seq.).
As its name implies, this program is an enhanced version of the very successful Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). The Michigan CREP enhancements are dedicated staff and financial incentives provided by the State of Michigan. CREP is a special conservation program that allows the CRP to be tailored to meet the needs of the State. CREP is a Federal-State conservation partnership program that targets significant environmental effects related to Agriculture. CREP priority areas include the Lake Macatawa, River Raisin, and Saginaw Bay Watersheds.
The Direct and Counter-cyclical Payment Program (DCP) provides payments to eligible producers on farms enrolled for the 2008 through 2012 crop years. There are two types of DCP payments - direct payments and counter-cyclical payments. Both are computed using the base acres and payment yields established for the farm. DCP is authorized by the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008 (2008 Farm Bill) and is administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Farm Service Agency (FSA).
A loan made to eligible applicants to purchase, enlarge, or make capital improvements to family farms, or to promote soil and water conservation and protection. Maximum loan amount is $300,000. A percentage of direct farm ownership loan funds is targeted for beginning farmers and socially disadvantaged applicants as mandated by sections 346 and 355 of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (Pub. L. 87-128) (CONACT) (7 U.S.C. 1994 and 7 U.S.C. 2003), respectively. The statutory authority for direct farm ownership loans is section 302 of the CONACT (7 U.S.C. 1922).
A loan made to an eligible applicant to assist with the financial costs of operating a farm. Maximum loan amount is $300,000. A percentage of direct operating loan funds are targeted for beginning farmers as mandated sections 346 and 355 of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (Pub. L. 87-128) (CONACT) (7 U.S.C. 1994 and 7 U.S.C. 2003), respectively. The statutory authority for direct operating loans is section 311 of the CONACT (7 U.S.C. 1911).
FSA administered programs that provide financial relief and assistance to farmers for natural disaster losses resulting from drought, flood, fire, freeze, tornadoes, pest infestation, and other calamities.
Provides emergency funding for farmers and ranchers to rehabilitate farmland damaged by wind erosion, floods, hurricanes, or other natural disasters, and for carrying out emergency water conservation measures during periods of severe drought. The natural disaster must create new conservation problems, which, if not treated, would: impair or endanger the land; materially affect the productive capacity of the land; represent unusual damage which, except for wind erosion, is not the type likely to recur frequently in the same area; and be so costly to repair that Federal assistance is, or will be, required to return the land to productive agricultural use. Authorized by section 401 of the Agricultural Credit Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-334) (16 U.S.C. 2201 et seq.).
Loans are available to eligible applicants who have incurred substantial financial losses from a disaster. Maximum outstanding loan amount is $500,000. The statutory authority for emergency loans is section 321 of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (Pub. L. 87-128) (7 U.S.C. 1961).
USDA may make loans to producers to build or upgrade farm storage and handling facilities. Commodities covered under this storage program include corn, grain sorghum, oats, wheat, or barley harvested as whole grain or other than whole grain. Soybeans, dry peas, lentils, chickpeas, peanuts, sunflower seeds, canola, rapeseed, safflower, flaxseed, mustard seed, and other oilseeds as CCC determines and announces are also eligible. The program is authorized under the CCC Charter Act (15 U.S.C. 714 et seq.).
GRP is voluntary, and it offers landowners the opportunity to protect, restore, and enhance grasslands on their property. Section 2401 of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Pub. L. 107-171) added section 1238N to the Food Security Act of 1985 (16 U.S.C. 3838n) to authorize this program. USDA's NRCS, FSA, and Forest Service are coordinating GRP implementation. The program will conserve vulnerable grasslands from conversion to cropland or other uses and conserve valuable grasslands by helping maintain viable ranching operations.
A loan made by another lender and guaranteed by FSA to eligible applicants to purchase, enlarge, or make capital improvements to family farms, or to promote soil and water conservation and protection. Maximum loan amount is $1,112,000 (for FY 2010). A percentage of guaranteed farm ownership loan funds is targeted for beginning farmers as mandated by sections 346 and 355 of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (CONACT) (Pub. L. 87-128) (7 U.S.C. 1994 and 7 U.S.C. 2003), respectively. The statutory authority for guaranteed farm ownership loans is section 302 of the CONACT (7 U.S.C. 1922).
A loan made by another lender and guaranteed by FSA to an eligible applicant to assist with the financial costs of operating a farm. Maximum loan amount is $1,112,000 (for FY 2010). A percentage of guaranteed operating loan funds is targeted for beginning farmers as mandated sections 346 and 355 of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (Pub. L. 87-128) (CONACT) (7 U.S.C. 1994 and 7 U.S.C. 2003), respectively. The statutory authority for guaranteed operating loans is Section 311 of the CONACT (7 U.S.C. 1941).
Indian Tribal Land Acquisition Program
A loan available to Indian tribes for purchasing privately held lands within their respective reservations boundaries. The statutory authority for Indian Tribal Land Acquisition loans is Pub. L. 91-229 (25 U.S.C 490).
The USDA Farm Service Agency's (FSA) MILC Program supports the dairy industry by providing direct counter-cyclical style payments to milk producers on a monthly basis when the Boston Federal Milk Marketing Order Class I price for fluid milk falls below the benchmark of $16.94 per hundredweight (cwt.). The 2008 Farm Bill changed the $16.94 per cwt of milk trigger for MILC payments to a variable trigger that may be adjusted monthly for variations in feed costs above $7.35 per cwt of a 16-percent protein feed ration. Monthly MILC payment rates will be determined and payments issued to eligible dairy operations when the Boston Class I price falls below the feed-cost-adjusted trigger. Certain per year per operation eligibility pound limits also apply.
The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (2008 Farm Bill) reauthorizes the MILC Program through September 30, 2012. The MILC Program was originally authorized by Section 1502 of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Pub. L. 107-1710 - 7 U.S.C. 7981).
Provides financial assistance to eligible producers affected by drought, flood, hurricane, or other natural disasters. This federally funded program covers noninsurable crop losses and planting prevented by disasters. Producers who are landowners, tenants, or sharecroppers who share in the risk of producing an eligible crop are eligible. Eligible crops include commercial crops and other agricultural commodities produced for food (including livestock feed) or fiber for which the catastrophic level of crop insurance is unavailable. Also eligible for NAP coverage are controlled-environment crops (mushrooms and floriculture), specialty crops (honey and maple sap), and value loss crops (aquaculture, Christmas trees, ginseng, ornamental nursery, and turfgrass sod). Authorized by section 196 of the Agricultural Market Transition Act (Pub. L. 104-127) (7 U.S.C. 7333), as amended.
Provide producers interim financing at harvest time to meet cash flow needs without having to sell their commodities when market prices are typically at harvest-time lows. Allowing producers to store production at harvest facilitates more orderly marketing of commodities throughout the year. Marketing assistance loans for covered commodities are nonrecourse because the commodities are pledged as loan collateral and producers have the option of delivering the pledged collateral to CCC as full payment for the loan at maturity.
A producer who is eligible to obtain a loan, but who agrees to forgo the loan, may obtain an LDP. The LDP rate equals the amount by which the applicable loan rate where the commodity is stored exceeds the alternative loan repayment rate for the respective commodity.
Sections 1201-1210 of the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-246) (2008 Farm Bill) continue nonrecourse marketing assistance loans and LDP provisions of previous legislation. The 2008 Act provides for nonrecourse marketing assistance loans and LDP's for the 2008-2012 crops of wheat, corn, grain sorghum, barley, oats, soybeans, other oilseeds (including sunflowers, canola, safflower, flaxseed, rapeseed, mustard seed, crambe and sesame), rice, upland cotton, peanuts, honey, wool, mohair, dry peas, lentils, and chickpeas.
Provides operating type loans to eligible rural youth applicants to finance a modest income-producing agricultural project. Maximum loan amount is $5,000. The statutory authority for youth loans is section 311 of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (Pub. L. 87-128).