NRCS Accepting Applications For WRP
By: GFB News
4/17/2013 11:03:50 AM
The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is calling for applications from landowners interested in restoring or enhancing wetlands on private agricultural or forested land in Georgia through the Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP).
The WRP provides financial incentives to landowners through purchased conservation easements to protect and restore their land to its natural wetland condition with an emphasis on enhancing wildlife habitats and environmental benefits. Participation in this program is voluntary and restoration is accomplished in an environmentally safe and cost-effective manner. As a result, participants in WRP voluntarily limit future use of their land by entering into a conservation easement with NRCS, but retain private ownership.
The program offers three enrollment options: permanent easements, 30-year easements and restoration cost-share agreements.
Eligible acres are limited to private and tribal lands, and easements cannot be placed on land that has changed ownership within the last seven years. Easement values are based upon a Geographic Area Rate Cap (GARC), which is valued each year by an independent contractor who performs a market analysis to estimate values of lands that typically enroll in WRP. NRCS publishes the GARC rates after approval.
Georgia landowners can learn more about conserving natural resources by contacting NRCS Georgia through USDA Service Centers or by visiting the NRCS Georgia homepage at http://www.ga.nrcs.usda.gov.
Interested private landowners are encouraged to visit their local Georgia NRCS field office as soon as possible to begin the application process. The application enrollment period for this year's WRP funding ends May 13.
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