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Conservation Opportunities. In Illinois April 2007. Helping People Help the Land. CSP. Programs Available State-Wide. Conservation Security Program. CRP. Conservation Reserve Program. EQIP. Environmental Quality Incentives Program. FRPP. Farm and Ranchland Protection Program. GRP.

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conservation opportunities

Conservation Opportunities

In Illinois

April 2007

Helping People Help the Land

programs available state wide
CSPPrograms Available State-Wide

Conservation Security Program

  • CRP

Conservation Reserve Program

  • EQIP

Environmental Quality Incentives Program

  • FRPP

Farm and Ranchland Protection Program

  • GRP

Grassland Reserve Program

  • WHIP

Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program

  • WRP

Wetlands Reserve Program

farm bill programs in illinois
Farm Bill programs in Illinois

State Technical Committee Structure

State & Federal Agencies

Commodity Groups


Private Groups & Others

State Technical Committee


Farm Bill programs in Illinois

Subcommitteesof the State Technical Committee

State Technical Committee

Help other agencies Work through program issues (CREP and others)

Assist with Program Ranking Criteria

Provide input for Technical Issues

conservation reserve program
Conservation Reserve Program


  • USDA program to help landowners implement conservation practices.
  • Takes cropland out of production and converts it to a conservation use.
crp in illinois
Continuous Sign-Up

Filter strips

Riparian buffers

Shallow water areas


Concentrated Sign-Up

Practices for highly erodible areas and others

CRP in Illinois


% Practice implementation cost (50%)

(plus incentives)


Cash rent based on soil type

environmental quality incentives program
Environmental Quality Incentives Program


  • Conservation program that:

promotes agricultural production

improves environmental quality

provides cost-share for structural and management practices.

eqip in illinois
EQIP in Illinois

State Technical Committeeguides EQIP in Illinois and advises on:

  • Ranking Criteria
  • Eligible Practices
  • Funding
eqip in illinois1
EQIP in Illinois

Program Highlights

  • Nationally, 60% of funding directed towards practices related to livestock production
  • Total payment limits of $450,000 per individual over the life of the Farm Bill, with additional limits on certain practices
  • Contract lengths vary (depending on contract obligation/appendix date)
eqip in illinois2
EQIP in Illinois

Program Highlights(continued)

  • Requires a Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan (CNMP) for producers with waste handling or storage facilities
  • Higher cost-share rates for limited resource farmers
eqip in illinois3
EQIP in Illinois

Continuous Sign-Up Process

  • Complete CCC-1200
    • Download an application from the Web and bring to the Field Office
    • Or, complete an application in the office
  • Self Certification for Limited Resource Producers & Beginning Farmers
    • No special rate for in IL for Beginning Farmers currently
eqip in illinois4
EQIP in Illinois

Continuous Sign-Up Process (continued)

  • Complete application and ranking criteria for:
    • Confined Livestock Operations
    • Grazing Land Operations
    • Applications Not Related to Livestock
    • Special Projects
      • Forest Management Plan
      • Streambank Stabilization
      • Ground and Surface Water Conservation projects
eqip in illinois5
EQIP in Illinois

Continuous Sign-Up Process (continued)

  • Application entered into Protracts
  • Summary of applications reviewed at the State Office electronically (via Protracts)
  • Funding decisions are made statewide based on ranking score
eqip in illinois6
EQIP in Illinois

EQIP Web Site

  • On the Illinois homepage at

  • Click on “programs”
eqip in illinois7
EQIP in Illinois

EQIP Web Site

  • Select “EQIP”
farm and ranchland protection program
Farm and Ranchland Protection Program


  • Program that provides matching funds to organizations with farmland protection programs to purchase conservation easements & protect land from uses other than agriculture.
frpp in illinois
FRPP in Illinois

Program Highlights

  • Landowners retain all rights to use property for agriculture
  • All conservation easements are held by the eligible organization
  • Non-government organizations (NGOs) are eligible to participate in the program as easement holders
grassland reserve program
Grassland Reserve Program


  • Program that provides technical and financial assistance to eligible landowners to restore and protect grasslands, including pastureland, while maintaining the areas as grazing lands.
grp in illinois
GRP in Illinois

Program Highlights

  • Emphasizes support for grazing operations, plant and animal biodiversity, grasslands under the threat of conversion and remnant prairies
  • Enrollment options include:
    • multi-year easements
    • rental agreements
    • restoration agreements
wetland reserve program
Wetland Reserve Program


  • Program that provides funding and technical assistance for the purchase of easements to restore and retire wetlands from agricultural production for the benefit of wildlife and water quality.
wrp in illinois
WRP in Illinois

Program Highlights

  • Cost share of 75% - 100%
  • Easement options:
    • 10 year cost-share
    • 30 year easement
    • Permanent easement
wildlife habitat incentives program
Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program


  • Program providing technical and financial assistance to improve and protect wildlife habitat on private lands.
whip in illinois
WHIP in Illinois

Program Highlights

  • 5-10 year agreements with 75% cost-share
  • 15 year agreements with 100% cost-share
conservation security program
Conservation Security Program


  • Program which supports ongoing conservation stewardship of agricultural lands by providing payments to producers who meet the highest standards of conservation and environmental management.

“CSP will reward the best and motivate the rest.”

USDA Secretary Ann M. Veneman




  • Available in priority watersheds
    • Watersheds are selected nationally based on potential for improvements to:
      • Water quality, including surface and groundwater
      • Soil quality
      • Grazing land conditions

Treatment Requirements

  • Applicants must meet minimum treatment requirements for soil quality and water quality
    • Achieve soil and water criteria will vary with the characteristics of each farm (slope, climate, etc.)
    • May include management of nutrients and pesticides, erosion control, buffers

“Three Tiers” of Participation*

Tier I

Address water quality and soil quality on part of the operation

Tier II

Address water quality and soil quality on the entire operation; plus address one other resource concern as identified for the watershed

Tier III

Address all resource concerns on entire operation


Tier 3

5-10 years

Up to $45,000/yr

Tier 2

5-10 years

Up to $35,000/yr

Tier 1

5 year contracts

Up to $20,000/yr

Enhancement Payments

Practice Payments

Base Payments


3-Tiered Payments


four payment components within each tier
Four Payment Components Within each Tier

An annual stewardship component for the benchmark (current level of) conservation treatment.

An annual existing practice component for maintaining existing conservation practices.

One-time new practice component for additional practices.

An enhancement component for exceptional conservation effort.

csp enhancement activities above minimum
CSP Enhancement (Activities above minimum)
  • Use VRT
  • Spring or sidedress application of N
  • Provide wildlife habitat beyond the minimum
  • Use low-hazard herbicides
  • Use soy biodiesel or ethanol

These are just a few of the activities


Application Process

  • Secretary of Agriculture announces sign-up period
  • Applicant determines whether the farm or ranch is in a selected watershed
  • Producer completes benchmark inventory of existing conservation condition and conservation activities planned for the future

Application Process (cont.)

  • NRCS conducts a follow-up interview to determine if the applicant meets eligibility requirements
  • NRCS places applications in tier and enrollment categories
  • Successful applicants are selected at the National Level
  • NRCS completes a conservation security plan with the new CSP contract holders
technical service providers
Technical Service Providers


  • TSPs are private individuals or entities that are trained and approved to provide technical assistance for conservation program delivery.

TSPs are eligible to provide technical assistance for a variety of items:

  • Nutrient management planning
  • Pest management planning
  • Comprehensive nutrient

Management planning

  • CRP status reviews
  • Conservation practice design,

Installation, checkout

  • Irrigation water management
  • Forestry management practices
  • Wildlife management practices
tsp tech reg
TSP – Tech Reg

Producers can find qualified TSPs on the Tech Reg site

federal register rules
Federal Register -- Rules
  • Every program has rules created by congress
  • Rules that govern our programs are recorded in the CFR (code of federal regulations)
federal register rules1
Federal Register -- Rules

federal register rules2
Federal Register -- Rules
  • Commodity Credit Corporation
  • 7 CFR Part 1466, RIN 0578-AA19
  • Environmental Quality Incentives Program
  • AGENCY: Commodity Credit Corporation, United States Department of Agriculture.
  • ACTION: Final rule.
  • SUMMARY: The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) is issuing a final rule for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). CCC published a proposed rule for EQIP in the Federal Register on October 11, 1996 (61 FR 53574) and solicited comments from the public. This final rule establishes the process by which CCC will administer EQIP, responds to comments received from the public during the 45-day comment period, and incorporates clarifications to improve implementation of the program.
  • EFFECTIVE DATE: May 22, 1997.
program manuals
Program Manuals
  • Every program has a program manual to follow.
  • The manual is the agency’s interpretation of the Federal Register rules.
  • The manual is what the agency uses to carry out the programs.
program manuals1
Program Manuals

NRCS Vision:

Productive Lands--Healthy Environment

NRCS Mission:

Helping People Help the Land

USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.