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Agriculture

Wed
02
Sep

What's up at the FSA Office?

by Joyce Davidshofer, Allamakee County Executive Director

Reminders
June 15 - September 30: ARC/PLC sign-up for 2014/2015 program.
July 1 - September 30: 2016 MPP (Dairy) Program sign-up period.
September 7: FSA Office closed for Labor Day.

Wed
26
Aug

“Map of My Kingdom” play focuses on land transition

“Map of My Kingdom,” a play commissioned by Practical Farmers of Iowa and written by Iowa’s Mary Swander, tackles the critical issue of land transition. Hosted by ISU Extension and Outreach, the play will premiere Wednesday, September 2 at 7:30 p.m. at Chase the Adventure, 1838 Middle Calmar Road, Decorah.
In the drama, Angela Martin, a lawyer and mediator in land transition disputes, shares stories of how farmers and landowners she has worked with over the years approached their land successions. Some families almost came to blows, struggling to resolve the sale or transfer of their land, dissolving relationships. Others found peacefully rational solutions that focused not only on the viability of the family, but also of the land.
Land is the thread that binds all of the stories together. “For most farmers I know, owning land means everything,” Angela Martin said.

Wed
26
Aug

What's up at the FSA Office?

by Joyce Davidshofer, Allamakee County Executive Director

The next Allamakee County Committee meeting will be Thursday, August 27 at 9 a.m. at the Allamakee County FSA Office conference room in Waukon.

Wed
19
Aug

What's up at the FSA Office?

The next Allamakee County Committee meeting will be Thursday, August 27 at 9 a.m. at the Allamakee County FSA Office conference room.

Reminders
June 15 - September 30: ARC/PLC sign-up period for 2014/2015 program.
July 1- September 30: 2016 MPP (Dairy) Program sign-up.
September 7: FSA Office closed for Labor Day.

Wed
12
Aug

DNR on track to complete inspections of confined animal feeding operations

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) recently reported that its work to comply with a five-year agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 7 is right on track. DNR staff completed 41 percent of required animal feeding operation inspections in its first two years of the work plan.
“Our biggest effort is to complete the required 8,582 inspections, working to identify any hog, cattle, dairy or other operations that need National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits,” said Barb Lynch, chief of DNR’s field services and compliance. “We agreed to complete about 20 percent of the inspections each year.

Wed
12
Aug

Farmers urged to use caution when using chemicals, fertilzers and manure

Hot temperatures, low stream levels and cloudbursts are the perfect recipe for a fish kill.
“Historically, fish kills occur more frequently under these conditions, and we are very dry here in northwest Iowa,” says Ken Hessenius, supervisor of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR’s) Spencer field office. “We’ve also investigated a few fish kills in other parts of the state this week.
“For that reason, we want to encourage farmers, pesticide and manure applicators and homeowners to be extra careful when using chemicals, fertilizers and manure,” he added.
The dog days of summer, when heat and algal blooms cause oxygen levels to drop, cause fish and other aquatic organisms like crayfish and dragonfly larvae to be especially vulnerable to pollutants.
Anyone who handles chemicals or animal manure can take a few simple precautions to prevent downstream impacts.

Wed
12
Aug

What's up at the FSA Office?

by Joyce Davidshofer, Allamakee County Executive Director

The next Allamakee County Committee meeting will be Thursday, August 27 at 9 a.m. at the Allamakee County FSA Office conference room.

Reminders
June 15 - August 3: Nominations can be received for the COC elections.
June 15 - September 30: ARC/PLC sign-up for 2014/2015 program.
July 1 - September 30: 2016 MPP (Dairy) Program sign-up period.

Wed
05
Aug

Producers reminded to file sodbust plans before breaking new ground

Producers bringing land into production that has not been previously cropped need to complete a sodbust plan at the Farm Service Agency (FSA) before doing any ground-breaking activity.  Producers should also check with FSA before removing any trees or shrubs from fence lines to ensure that those areas are considered part of existing fields or a sodbust form will need to be filled out. Failure to complete a sodbust plan could jeopardize farm program payments. Producers will also need to revise their NRCS conservation plan to ensure that the planned tillage and rotation will meet the soil loss requirements.  
The Allamakee County District Commissioners have decided that they will not approve sodbust plans for the following reasons:
• If sodbust paperwork is not filed at the FSA office before breaking ground;
• If the ground has a class 6 or higher;
• If the ground is predominantly an E slope or greater;

Wed
05
Aug

Father-son duo invests in conservation

by Jason Johnson, Public Affairs Specialist, USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service

Wed
29
Jul

Deadline to terminate farm leases is Sept. 1

submitted by Sara Berges, Allamakee SWCD

Now is a good time to think about your farm lease for next year.  According to Iowa law, if you want to terminate your rental agreement or make changes in your current lease terms, you must properly serve a notice of termination by September 1. This applies to both cash and crop-share leases, but not custom farming contracts.
 
In 2013, the Iowa Legislature made a change in state law regarding lease termination. The previous law exempted termination notice for parcels under 40 acres.  Now, a written notice of termination is required on all tracts of rented farmland, regardless of size. Farm leases automatically continue as written from year to year unless either party gives a notice of termination. Even an oral lease is automatically renewed if it is not properly terminated.

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