Disbursement of Funds; Correction
This action corrects a final rule that was published in the Federal Register on Wednesday, October 12, 2005.
U.S. Warehouse Act Fees
This notice sets forth a schedule increasing the annual operational fee warehouse operators are charged under the United States Warehouse Act (USWA). This action is needed to increase revenue to cover operational costs projected for operations under the USWA in fiscal year 2006. This notice does not change any of the other various license or inspection fees charged under the USWA.
Notice of Funds Availability Inviting Applications for Innovative Ways To Enhance the Economic Viability of Underserved and Limited-Resource Farmers and Ranchers
This is a request by the Farm Service Agency (FSA) for proposals for applications for cooperative agreements for FY 2006 to help underserved and limited resource farmers and ranchers become more efficient operators and more economically viable. FY 2005 funding for similar cooperative agreements was $2 million. This notice is being issued prior to passage of a final Department of Agriculture Appropriations Bill to allow applicants sufficient time to prepare and submit proposals and give FSA sufficient time to process applications within FY 2006. An additional Notice of Funding Availability will be published announcing the funding level for FY 2006 once an appropriations act has been enacted. FSA requests proposals from eligible 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, land grant institutions, including Tuskegee University, State governments, and Federally- Recognized Indian Tribal Governments, interested in competitively awarded cooperative agreements, to demonstrate innovative and unique approaches to equip underserved and limited-resource farmers and ranchers, including beginning farmers and ranchers, to become more efficient and economically viable. Proposals should demonstrate innovative and unique ways to help underserved and limited-resource farmers and ranchers improve their economic viability through training, technical assistance, improved farming practices, and more effective marketing approaches. Underserved and limited-resource farmers and ranchers have different challenges to economic viability due to location, educational assets, age, and landownership. The need to properly address these challenges through education, training, technical assistance and the most creative ways of outreach is critical to the continued existence of the small farm. People in, or entering into, farming have an array of backgrounds and varied levels of current farm and farm business experience and knowledge. More and more qualified alien immigrants are entering American farming. Often, they are unfamiliar with productive marketing practices, acquisition of land, government assistance, and crop and animal production diversity. While there are no significant legal obstacles to becoming a farmer in the United States, many barriers to successful farming exist. Among those barriers are (1) increasing capital expenses, (2) progressive managerial requirements, and (3) competition with large-scale producers. Among limited-resource farmers, a subgroup, the underserved farmer, faces even more barriers to achieving success. In recognition of the dynamic needs of limited-resource and underserved farmers, FSA solicits proposals for innovative approaches to assisting the diverse limited- resource and underserved farm community.
Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection; Disaster Set-Aside Program
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intent of the Farm Service Agency (FSA) to request approval for an extension and revision of the information collection package currently used in support of the FSA Farm Loan Programs (FLP).
Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection; Payment Eligibility and Payment Limitation Determinations Under the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intention of the Farm Service Agency (FSA) and the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) to request an extension and revision of a currently approved information collection. This information collection is used to support payment eligibility and payment limitation determinations for multiple programs including the Conservation Reserve Program, Price Support Programs, the Direct and Counter-Cyclical Program authorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, and the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program.
Disbursement of Funds
The Agencies are revising their disbursement of funds regulations. This action is necessary since existing regulations do not accurately reflect the current disbursement methodologies employed by the Agencies. The intended effect is to simplify and update the regulations; to eliminate reference to the obsolete Loan Disbursement System; clarify Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) insurance coverage; and eliminate reference to the now defunct Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation (FSLIC). These amended regulations are to ensure the Agencies' field offices have current guidance on the disbursement methods available and supervised bank accounts.
Guaranteed Farm Ownership and Operating Loan Requirements
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is amending its regulations governing loans made under the guaranteed farm loan program to specifically allow lenders to use the loans as security for loans to the lenders, remove certain documentation and designation requirements for lenders, and modify security restrictions as to refinancing and junior liens.
Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection; Debt Settlement Policies and Procedures
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intention of the Farm Service Agency (FSA) and the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) to request renewal of the information collection currently approved and used in support of the FSA and CCC Debt Settlement Policies and Procedures program. Provisions in the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 and in the Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996 have resulted in a decrease in burden hours for information collection under the FSA and CCC Debt Settlement Policies and Procedures program.
Addition of Eligible States for Beginning Farmer and Rancher Land Contract Guarantee Pilot Program
This notice announces that the Farm Service Agency (FSA) is adding California, Minnesota, and Nebraska as eligible states to its Beginning Farmer and Rancher Land Contract Guarantee Pilot Program. Expanding the Pilot Program is intended to facilitate land transfers to a greater number of beginning farmers and ranchers.
Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection; Request for Direct Loan Assistance
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intent of the Farm Service Agency (FSA) to request renewal of the information collection currently approved and used in support of the FSA Farm Loan Programs (FLP). This information collection has been revised for clarification in conjunction with the request for extension of the burden package.
Guaranteed Loans-Retaining PLP Status and Payment of Interest Accrued During Bankruptcy and Redemption Rights Periods
This action proposes several amendments to the regulations governing the Farm Service Agency (FSA) guaranteed farm loan program. First, this rule proposes to allow Preferred Lender Program (PLP) lenders, under certain conditions, to retain their PLP status for a period not to exceed one year after their loss ratio exceeds the standard established by the Agency, currently set at three percent. Secondly, FSA proposes to pay lenders additional interest on a final loss claim if a bankruptcy prevents the lender from taking liquidation action or a state's mandatory redemption law prevents the lender from disposing of property acquired through foreclosure. The changes proposed are intended to improve the services the Agency provides to its customers.
Interest Assistance Program
This document corrects the e-mail address for submission of public comments on the proposed rule regarding the Farm Service Agency's (FSA's) Interest Assistance Program published June 22, 2005, and extends the comment period to ensure that all public comments are received by the Agency. The original comment period for the proposed rule closes on August 22, 2005, and FSA is extending it until September 6, 2005. Respondents who sent comments to the earlier e-mail address are encouraged to contact the person named below to find out if their comments were received and re-submit them to the e-mail address below if necessary.
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is amending the regulations for informal agency appeals to make conforming and clarifying changes regarding FSA procedures.
Public Meetings of Advisory Committee on Beginning Farmers and Ranchers
In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App. II, the Farm Service Agency (FSA) is issuing this notice to advise the public that meetings of the Advisory Committee on Beginning Farmers and Ranchers (Committee) will be held to discuss various beginning farmer issues.
Alaska Dairy Fund
This Notice announces the availability of funds to be applied to accounts of Alaska dairy farmers. As provided by the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act for Defense, the Global War on Terror, and Tsunami Relief, 2005 (2005 Emergency Supplemental Act) (Pub. L. 109-13) $1 million made available by section 786 of the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration and Related Agencies Appropriations (2005 Appropriations Act)(Pub. L. 108-447) may be applied to accounts of Alaska dairy farmers owed to the Secretary.
Revision of Interest Assistance Program
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is proposing to revise the regulations that govern how an FSA Farm Loan Programs (FLP) guaranteed loan borrower may obtain a subsidized interest rate on their guaranteed farm loan. This program is known as the Interest Assistance (IA) Program. Changes include deletion of annual review requirements, limitations on loan size and period of assistance, and streamlining of claim submission. The changes are intended to reduce paperwork burden on program participants and agency employees, make IA available to more farmers, reduce the costs of the program, and enhance the fiscal integrity of the program.
Meeting Entitled “Conservation Reserve Program: Re-enrollments and Extensions”
USDA's Farm Service Agency (FSA) is hosting a public meeting on re-enrollment and extension of certain Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) contracts. The CRP is the Nation's largest conservation program.
Advisory Committee on Beginning Farmers and Ranchers
The Secretary of Agriculture intends to renew the charter of the Advisory Committee on Beginning Farmers and Ranchers (Committee). The Committee provides advice to the Secretary on ways to encourage Federal and State beginning farmer programs to provide joint financing to beginning farmers and ranchers, and other methods of creating new farming and ranching opportunities. Nominations of persons to serve on the Committee are invited.
Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection; Emergency Conservation Program
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intention of the Farm Service Agency (FSA) to request an extension and revision of currently approved information collection used in support of the Emergency Conservation Program (ECP).
Management of Property
The Rural Housing Service (RHS) is amending this regulation to remove an incorrect reference. The intended effect of this change is to ensure that Agency regulations continue to provide current information.
Request for Extension of a Currently Approved Information Collection; Representations for CCC and FSA Loans and Authorization To File a Financing Statement
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intent of the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) and the Farm Service Agency (FSA) to request extension of the information collection currently used in support of the CCC and FSA Farm Loan Programs (FLP).
Tobacco Transition Payment Program
This rule provides regulations for the Tobacco Transition Payment Program (TTPP), as required by Title VI of the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004 (the 2004 Act), ending the tobacco marketing quota and price support loan programs. The TTPP will provide payments over a ten-year period to quota holders and producers of quota tobacco to help them make the transition from the federally-regulated program. This rule also removes from the Code of Federal Regulations obsolete tobacco program provisions at 7 CFR parts 723 and 1464.
Tree Assistance Program, Forest Timber Program, Pecan Tree Program; Notice of Fund Availability and Proposed Fund Availability
This document announces assistance under the Farm Service Agency's Tree Assistance Program (TAP) regulations in 7 CFR part 783 as authorized by the Military Construction and Appropriations Act, 2005. The first part of this notice announces the availability of assistance for claims under TAP related to Orchardists and Forest Land Owners. The second part proposes funding for special Tree Assistance Program benefits with respect to Pecan Tree Producers. The provisions in this notice for orchard and forest timber assistance are final. For pecan tree assistance, a period is allowed for comments since it is proposed that ``other appropriate activities'' allowed for assistance would only include those related to pruning and tree rehabilitation. This notice is intended to provide notice to those producers who may qualify for this assistance, and provide conditions for eligibility required by the Act under which it is funded.
Information Collection; Transfer of Farm Records Between Counties
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Farm Service Agency (FSA) is seeking comments from interested individuals and organizations on a new information collection associated with transferring of farm records from one administrative county office to another.
Notice of Request for Extension of a Currently Approved Information Collection: United States Warehouse Act
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Farm Service Agency's (FSA) intention to request an extension from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for an information collection process currently in effect with respect to regulations, licensing and electronic provider agreements issued under the United States Warehouse Act (USWA).
Request for an Extension of a Currently Approved Information Collection “ County Committee Elections
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Farm Service Agency (FSA) is seeking comments from all interested individuals and entities on the extension of a currently approved information collection used in support of the FSA County Committee Elections. The collection of information from FSA Farmers and Ranchers is used to receive nominations from eligible voters for the County Committee.
Revision of Indian Tribal Land Acquisition Program Loan Regulations
This rule clarifies the Indian Tribal Land Acquisition Program (ITLAP) regulations for borrowers who apply for a rental value write- down. The rule clarifies the method for determining the rental value of security for purposes of a write-down, adds a definition of ``rental value,'' clarifies other write-down eligibility provisions, and limits new loan eligibility for borrowers who have received a write-down in the past. These clarifications are intended to reduce the borrower's costs of applying for a rental value write-down, and reduce the burden on Agency employees in processing requests.