7 CFR 1466.8 - Program requirements.

§ 1466.8 Program requirements.
(a) Program participation is voluntary. The applicant must develop an EQIP plan of operations for the agricultural or nonindustrial private forest land to be treated that serves as the basis for the EQIP contract. NRCS provides participants with technical assistance and payments to plan and apply needed conservation practices.
(b) To be eligible to participate in EQIP, an applicant must:
(1) Be in compliance with the highly erodible land and wetland conservation provisions found at part 12 of this title;
(2) Have an interest in the agricultural operation as defined in part 1400 of this chapter;
(3) Have control of the land for the term of the proposed contract period;
(i) The Chief may determine that land administered by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), Indian land, or other such circumstances provides sufficient assurance of control,
(ii) If the applicant is a tenant of the land involved in agricultural production or forestry management, the applicant shall provide the Chief with the written concurrence of the landowner in order to apply a structural conservation practice,
(4) Submit an EQIP plan of operations or plan developed for the purposes of acquiring an air or water quality permit, provided these plans contain elements equivalent to those elements required by an EQIP plan of operations and are acceptable to the State Conservationist as being consistent with the purposes of the program;
(5) Supply information, as required by NRCS, to determine eligibility for the program, including but not limited to, information to verify the applicant's status as a limited resource, beginning farmer or rancher, and payment eligibility as established by part 1400 of this chapter; and
(6) Provide a list of all members of the legal entity and embedded entities along with members' tax identification numbers and percentage interest in the entity. Where applicable, American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Pacific Islanders may use another unique identification number for each individual eligible for payment.
(c) Eligible land includes agricultural land and nonindustrial private forest land, and other land on which agricultural products, livestock, or forest-related products are produced and resource concerns may be addressed. Other agricultural lands include cropped woodland, marshes, incidental areas included in the agricultural operation, and other types of agricultural land used for production of livestock. However, land may be considered for enrollment in EQIP only if NRCS determines that the land is:
(1) Privately owned land;
(2) Publicly owned land where:
(i) The land is a working component of the participant's agricultural and forestry operation, and
(ii) The participant has control of the land for the term of the contract, and
(iii) The conservation practices to be implemented on the public land are necessary and will contribute to an improvement in the identified resource concern; or
(3) Indian land.
(d) Sixty percent of available EQIP financial assistance will be targeted to conservation practices related to livestock production, including practices on grazing lands and other lands directly attributable to livestock production, as measured at the national level.
(e) NRCS will establish a national target to set aside five percent of EQIP funds for socially disadvantaged farmers or ranchers and an additional five percent of EQIP funds for beginning farmers or ranchers.
[68 FR 32348, May 30, 2003, as amended at 74 FR 25617, May 29, 2009]

Title 7 published on 2014-01-01

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