Dakota Country Magazine October 2016 Edition - Page 73

“During the latest CRP signup (Feb. 2016), landowners who demonstrated an overwhelming demand for voluntary conservation practices under CRP were met with the lowest acceptance rates in the program’s 30-year history,” said Dave Nomsen, vice president of governmental affairs for Pheasants Forever. “That’s why we’re calling for sportsmen and women to support strong conservation provision in the Farm Bill, including a larger and more robust CRP authorization that meets the demand from farmers, ranchers and other landowners, who improve wildlife habitat and provide us with better recreational and access opportunities.” When the 1985 Farm Bill produced CRP, it claimed 38 million acres devoted to saving soil, water and habitat. CRP acreage at present, nation-wide, is at 24 million acres. Yet there’s a huge waiting list of landowners who are anxious to get into the program. You have to wonder, what is Congress afraid of, considering that thousands of landowners www.dakotacountrymagazine.com Granted, there’s a lot of pressure on the agricul tural community today. Programs like the Working Wetlands Pilot Project, CRP, North Dakota Private Land Open to Sportsmen (PLOTS), Walk-In Acres (South Dakota) and more, compensate landowners to conserve habitat without losses. Dakota Country, October 2016, Page 73