Enrollment deadline nears for agriculture risk coverage

Published 11:12 am Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Eligible producers are reminded that enrollment in the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs for 2014 and 2015 ends Sept. 30.

The new programs, established by the 2014 Farm Bill, trigger financial protections for agricultural producers when market forces cause substantial drops in crop prices or revenues. More than 1.76 million farmers have elected ARC or PLC. Previously, 1.7 million producers had enrolled to receive direct payments (the program replaced with ARC and PLC by the 2014 Farm Bill). This means more farms have elected ARC or PLC than previously enrolled under previously administered programs.

Nationwide, 96 percent of soybean farms, 91 percent of corn farms, and 66 percent of wheat farms elected ARC. 99 percent of long grain rice farms, 99 percent of peanut farms, and 94 percent of medium grain rice farms elected PLC. For data about other crops and state-by-state program election results go to www.fsa.usda.gov/arc-plc.

Covered commodities under ARC and PLC include barley, canola, large and small chickpeas, corn, crambe, flaxseed, grain sorghum, lentils, mustard seed, oats, peanuts, dry peas, rapeseed, long grain rice, medium grain rice (which includes short grain and sweet rice), safflower seed, sesame, soybeans, sunflower seed and wheat. Upland cotton is no longer a covered commodity.

For more information please contact your local FSA officehttp://offices.usda.gov

2015 Suffolk County Committee Elections

Voting for the 2015 County Committee elections will soon be underway. Eligible voters in the Chuckatuck / Sleepy Hole borough (LAA # 1) will receive an election ballot after Nov. 9. County committee members provide an important link between the local agricultural community and USDA.  Farmers and ranchers elected to county committees help deliver FSA programs at the local level, applying knowledge and judgement to make decisions on commodity support programs, conservation programs, indemnity programs, disaster programs, emergency programs, and eligibility for these programs. Eligible voters must return ballots to the Suffolk FSA Office by the Dec. 7, deadline to ensure their vote is counted.

The following eligible nominees representing the Chuckatuck/Sleepy Hole borough will be on the election ballot this year:

• Shelley S. Butler-Barlow. She resides at 696 N. Cherry Grove Road and has worked on the family farm since 1997. Shelley farms over 970 acres of cropland in Suffolk and Isle of Wight County and produces wheat, corn, upland cotton, soybeans and sweet corn. Shelley serves on the following agriculture boards:

Suffolk County Committee – Chairperson

Farm Bureau – Ag. Education Committee – Member

Ag. PAC Committee – Chairperson

VDACS – Board member

Virginia Cotton Board – Member

VALOR (Ag. Leadership Program ) – Class 2 Fellow


2010 – Farm Bureau – Farm Woman of the Year; 2007 – Farm Family of the Year

• Pablo Ovando. He resides at 6206 Glenrose Drive, and has been farming full-time since 2012. Pablo farms 5.0 acres of cropland in Suffolk and produces the following vegetable crops: peppers, tomatoes, beans and corn.

Awards: 2014 – Small Family Farmer of the Year

Loans available for targeted underserved producers

FSA has a number of loan programs available to assist applicants to begin or continue in agriculture production. Loans are available for operating type loans and/or to purchase or improve farms or ranches.

While all qualified producers are eligible to apply for these loan programs, FSA has provided priority funding for members of targeted underserved applicants.

A targeted underserved applicant is one of a group whose members have been subjected to racial, ethnic or gender prejudice because of his or her identity as members of the group without regard to his or her individual qualities.

For purposes of this program, targeted underserved groups are women, African-Americans, American Indians, Alaskan Natives, Hispanics, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

FSA loans are only available to applicants who meet all the eligibility requirements and are unable to obtain the needed credit elsewhere

Important Dates to Remember

• Special Emphasis Observance – Sept. 15-Oct. 15: Hispanic Heritage Month

• Sept. 30 – Final date to enroll in 2014 and 2015 ARCPLC.

• Sept. 30 – 2016 NAP Sales Closing Date for All Small Grains.

• Sept. 30 – 2016 Margin Protection Program-Dairy Enrollment Deadline.

• Oct. 2 – Annual CRP payments to be issued.

• Oct. 12 – Columbus Day – Offices closed.

• Nov. 9 – Election ballots mailed to eligible voters.

• Nov. 11 – Veteran’s Day – Offices Closed.

• Nov. 15 – Final 2016 Acreage Reporting Date for Perennial hay (forage crops and pasture (grazing) acreage.

• Nov. 20 – 2016 NAP Sales Closing Date for Fruit/Nut Trees, Woody Bushes/Vines and Strawberries.

• Dec. 1 – 2016 NAP Sales Closing Date for Honey and Maple Sap.

• Dec. 5 – 2016 General CRP Signup Begins.

• Continuous – CREP Enrollment.

• Continuous – 2015 LIP Notice of Loss Due (w/in 30 days of loss).