Information Collection Request; Application for Payment of Amounts Due Persons Who Have Died, Disappeared, or Have Been Declared Incompetent
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) and the Farm Service Agency (FSA) are requesting comments from all interested individuals and organizations on a revision and an extension of a currently approved information collection. CCC and FSA use the information to determine whether representatives or survivors of a producer are entitled to receive payments earned by a producer who dies, disappears, or is declared incompetent before receiving payments or other disbursements.
Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage Programs; Correction
The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) is correcting a final rule that was published in the Federal Register on September 3, 2019, which revised the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) Programs. That document inadvertently failed to include the relevant counties in Nebraska that have been established as having a history of double-cropping covered commodities or peanuts with fruits, vegetables, or wild rice and incorrectly listed the previous Regulation Identifier Number (RIN).
Information Collection Request; Organic Certification Cost Share Program
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Farm Service Agency (FSA) is requesting comments from all interested individuals and organizations on a revision and an extension of a current information collection request associated with the Organic Certification Cost Share Program (OCCSP). OCCSP provides cost share assistance to producers and handlers of agricultural products who are obtaining or renewing their certification under the National Organic Program (NOP). Certified operations may receive up to 75 percent of their certification costs paid. Certain State agencies also submit applications to FSA to administer OCCSP in their States.
Notice of Availability of the Draft Programmatic Environmental Assessment for the Farm Service Agency's Conservation Reserve Program
FSA, acting on behalf of the CCC, announces the availability for review and comment the draft Programmatic Environmental Assessment (PEA) assessing the alternatives to and anticipated environmental impacts of potential changes from the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018 (2018 Farm Bill) to the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). The intent of this notice is to make the draft PEA available for review and request comments by the public, other agencies, and Tribes on the proposed alternatives and their potential impacts to the human environment. The feedback we receive from this notice will be incorporated into the final PEA, as appropriate, prior to FSA's decision.
Agricultural Disaster Indemnity Programs
This rule establishes provisions for providing agricultural disaster assistance as authorized by the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act, 2019 (Disaster Relief Act). The Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+) will provide payments to eligible producers who suffered eligible crop, tree, bush, and vine losses resulting from hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, typhoons, volcanic activity, snowstorms, and wildfires that occurred in the 2018 and 2019 calendar years. The On-Farm Storage Loss Program will provide payments to eligible producers who suffered uncompensated losses of harvested commodities stored in farm structures as a result of hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, typhoons, volcanic activity, snowstorms, and wildfires that occurred in the 2018 and 2019 calendar years. The Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program (WHIP) Milk Loss Program will provide payments to eligible dairy operations for milk that was dumped or removed without compensation from the commercial milk market due to hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, typhoons, volcanic activity, snowstorms, and wildfires that occurred in the 2018 and 2019 calendar years. This rule specifies the administrative provisions, eligibility requirements, application procedures, and payment calculations for WHIP+, On-Farm Storage Loss Program, and WHIP Milk Loss Program. As required by the Disaster Relief Act, this rule also expands eligibility for 2017 WHIP to include losses incurred from Tropical Storm Cindy, losses of peach and blueberry crops in calendar year 2017 due to extreme cold, and blueberry productivity losses in calendar year 2018 due to extreme cold and hurricane damage in calendar year 2017. This rule updates the regulations for the Tree Assistance Program (TAP) to provide assistance for eligible orchardists or nursery tree growers of pecan trees with a tree mortality rate that exceeds 7.5 percent (adjusted for normal mortality) and is less than 15 percent (adjusted for normal mortality) for losses incurred in calendar year 2018. Prevented planting supplemental disaster payments will provide support to producers who were prevented from planting eligible crops for the 2019 crop year due to excess precipitation, flood, storm surge, tornado, volcanic activity, tropical depressions, hurricanes, and cyclones in the 2019 calendar year. This rule specifies the administrative provisions, eligibility requirements, and payment calculations for prevented planting supplemental disaster payments.
Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage Programs
This rule implements the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) Programs authorized by the Agricultural Act of 2014 (the 2014 Farm Bill), as amended. The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (2018 Farm Bill) amended 2014 Farm Bill provisions regarding ARC and PLC, and authorized the ARC and PLC Programs for the 2019 through 2023 program years. The ARC and PLC Programs are continuing, with some changes. This rule also includes conforming changes to Farm Service Agency (FSA) general regulations that apply to multiple programs. The ARC and PLC Programs provide producers a choice between a counter-cyclical payment support type program (PLC) and an income support program (ARC). In a defined election and enrollment period, producers can elect different programs for different covered commodities on a farm, for example, choosing PLC for corn and ARC for soybeans on the same farm. There is also an option to elect ARC individual coverage (ARC-IC); however, if that option is elected, all the farm's covered commodities are elected with that option. This rule specifies the eligibility requirements, enrollment procedures, and payment calculations for the ARC and PLC Programs.
Stakeholder Listening Sessions on Heirs' Property
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is hosting two listening sessions for public input about the heirs' property relending program and heirs' property issues for landowners or farm operators providing proper documentation as the owner of the farm or land in order to obtain a farm number to be eligible for the FSA programs, as required by the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (2018 Farm Bill). FSA is interested in your input and comments in resolving ownership and succession on farmland and undivided interest that has multiple owners. We invite you to participate in the listening session. The listening session is open to the public.
Notice of Funds Availability (NOFA); Market Facilitation Program (MFP) Payments to Producers
MFP provides payments to producers with commodities that have been impacted by trade actions of foreign governments resulting in the loss of exports. This NOFA announces the availability of MFP funds for eligible producers of specified agricultural commodities for 2019 that include certain non-specialty crops, specialty crops, dairy, and livestock as specified in this NOFA. On behalf of the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC), the Farm Service Agency (FSA) will administer MFP. MFP dairy and livestock payments will be calculated on the eligible production amount multiplied by the participant's share in the commodity multiplied by the MFP payment rate. MFP participants of non- specialty and specialty crops will receive an MFP payment based upon the participant's ownership interest in the 2019 crop that was planted and reported to FSA for the 2019 crop year, including cover crops that are planted for harvest following a prevented planted non-specialty crop. The payment rate used by CCC to issue payments for non-specialty crops will be on a county-by-county basis and reflects the amount of damage incurred in a county by producers of the non-specialty crops from the imposition of tariffs by other countries on U.S. agricultural products. The payment rate for specialty crops will be on a state-by- state basis if sufficient data is available, otherwise payments will be on a national basis. This NOFA also announces the availability of 2018 MFP payments for a limited number of producers who are now eligible for assistance as the result of a provision of the Additional Supplemental Appropriations For Disaster Relief Act, 2019 (2019 Disaster Relief Act).
Emergency Conservation Program
The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (2018 Farm Bill) amended provisions of the Emergency Conservation Program (ECP). This rule implements those changes to ECP and makes additional minor technical amendments to the ECP regulations. The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is amending regulations to add wildfires as an eligible natural disaster, expand eligibility requirements, increase the maximum payment amount certain participants may receive, provide cost-share for fence repair and replacement, and provide certain cost-share payments more expeditiously than was previously authorized under ECP. In addition, this rule makes minor changes related to the Emergency Forest Restoration Program (EFRP).
Information Collection Request; Online Registration for FSA-Hosted Events and Conferences
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Farm Service Agency (FSA) is requesting comments from all interested individuals and organizations on an extension of the information collection associated with online registration for FSA-hosted events and conferences. The information collection is needed for FSA to obtain information from the respondents who register on the internet to make payment and reservations to attend any FSA-hosted conferences and events.
Dairy Margin Coverage Program and Dairy Indemnity Payment Program
This final rule implements the requirements of the dairy programs administered by the Farm Service Agency (FSA) on behalf of the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC). The Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) Program, as authorized by the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (2018 Farm Bill), replaces the Margin Protection Program (MPP-Dairy) for dairy producers and retains much of the structure of MPP-Dairy. DMC is a margin-based support program for dairy producers that provides risk management coverage that will pay producers when the difference between the national price of milk and the national estimated cost of feed (the margin) falls below a certain level. The rule also extends the Dairy Indemnity Payment Program (DIPP) through 2023 and amends the regulations to incorporate a specific period of time for which claims for the same loss will be eligible for indemnification under DIPP.
Office of The Secretary; Privacy Act of 1974; System of Records
This notice proposes to revise to the Privacy Act System of Records titled Farm Records File (Automated) USDA, which includes information for certain Farm Service Agency under (FSA) Farm Programs and certain Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) programs that are administered by FSA on behalf of CCC. The records include information about the majority of agricultural producers in the United States. In general, USDA is modifying the system of records to add three new routine uses and make updates to one routine use to comply with recent requirements.
Office of the Secretary; Privacy Act of 1974; System of Records
As required by the Privacy Act of 1974, and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular No. A-108, this notice proposes that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA or Department) revisions to the Privacy Act System of Records titled Applicant/ Borrower USDA/FSA-14, which include information on current, former, and prospective applicants and borrowers including members of entities. The system contains information on agricultural producers in the United States requesting or obtaining the Farm Service Agency (FSA) Farm Loan Programs benefits. In general, USDA proposes to revise the system of records to make minor corrections and updates to meet additional requirements. USDA is also revising the system of records to add 10 new routine uses.
Current and Anticipated Future Spectrum Requirements for Commercial Agriculture, Forestry, Mining, and Rural Manufacturing
The Farm Service Agency (FSA), an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), invites comment on the radio spectrum requirements of commercial agriculture, forestry, mining, and rural manufacturing. The information received will advise USDA regarding non- Federal spectrum policy needs in rural settings and offer insight into the technology needs and potential applications in commercial agriculture.
2018 Farm Bill Implementation Listening Session
In preparing to implement the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (commonly referred to as the 2018 Farm Bill), we are hosting a listening session for initial public input about new programs and changes to existing programs implemented by the Farm Service Agency (FSA), the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), and the Risk Management Agency (RMA). The 2018 Farm Bill is intended to provide support, certainty, and stability to our Nation's farmers, ranchers, and land stewards by enhancing farm support programs, improving crop insurance, maintaining disaster programs, and promoting and supporting voluntary conservation. We invite you to participate in the listening session. The listening session is open to the public.
Information Collection Request; Direct Loan Making
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, the Farm Service Agency (FSA) is requesting comments from all interested individuals and organizations on a revision and an extension of a currently approved information collection associated with Direct Loan Making Program. The collected information is used in eligibility and feasibility determinations on farm loan applications.