Thursday, December 17, 2015

Criteria for $25 Million Southern Tier Agricultural Industry Enhancement Program Announced

From the state of New York:

Program criteria for the $25 million Southern Tier Agricultural Industry Enhancement Program were announced this week.

The eligibility requirements are now available online by going to The program will provide money for projects designed to help farms and agribusinesses expand and grow their operations, as well as increase environmental enhancements in Allegany, Broome, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Chemung, Chenango, Delaware, Schuyler, Steuben, Tompkins and Tioga counties. 

Applications will be available beginning Jan. 19.
Eligible projects will increase agricultural production on farms and improve profitability, as well as support farmers in better managing and enhancing environmental resources. 

Projects awarded state money may receive up to $100,000 to help with expenses associated with construction, renovation, irrigation, drainage, environmental enhancements, fencing, trellis systems and greenhouses. 

Eligible applicants that demonstrate an exemplary commitment to protecting or enhancing natural resources, may also be entitled to an additional $10,000 toward their project.
The Department of Agriculture and Markets will work in coordination with the County Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCD) to administer the program. The SWCDs will pre-qualify projects and oversee the implementation of awards. 

Awards will be made on a semi-annual basis for a period of two years or until funding is depleted. Applications will be available and filed locally through each respective county SWCD. 

To find a list of the SWCDs, click  on this link.

Applicants must meet the department’s definition of a farm operation and meet additional criteria as outlined in the program criteria, including participation in the New York State Agricultural Environmental Management program within the past three years, or a commitment to participate in the program prior to being awarded.

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