No Farm Bill but new changes already
FSA changed crop reporting dates to align with crop insurance dates several years ago. The new dates for wheat, hay and graze caused some confusion and anxious moments as they were implemented. So on Jan. 14 another change was made to reduce the anxiety and hopefully lessen the confusion.
The annual deadlines to report various crops have not changed.
The official deadline to report wheat planted in the fall of 2013 remains Dec. 15.
The deadline to report cropland acres that will be in hay or pasture in 2014 remains Nov. 15.
Corn, soybeans, and milo will need to be reported by July 15.
What did change was the waiver of late-filed fees. Originally a penalty of $46 was to be assessed for each farm number reported after the deadline. Due to the government shutdown in October 2013, those fees were to be waived if the reports were made before Jan. 15. Then on Jan. 14 the waiver of the fees was extended until Dec. 31 for the 2014 crop only.
Producers should not be confused about the dates and fees. To be clear, crop insurance and FSA still require the reports be made prior to the deadlines. Failure to report timely may jeopardize your benefits.
‘Til the cows come home
Due to a variety of factors, many cows have gone to town, only not to come home. Pastures and hay fields will be planted to crops. Expired CRP acres will be planted to row crops. Producers are reminded to meet with NRCS and develop a conservation plan on those new cropped acres and thoroughly discuss with your insurance representative prior to the policy purchase date of March 15. There are many rules that apply when you break ground out of sod and some acres and crops will be insurable and others not. The March 15 date may also be key, check with your insurance provider.
New Fax Numbers
Fax numbers have changed.
The new fax number for the FSA staff is now 855-825-4977. The new fax number for NRCS is now 855-825-4978. With this new process and numbers, when you fax to the FSA office, the fax will be converted to an email sent to all FSA employees. This is intended to reduce response time as it will come to our attention sooner than with the traditional fax machine. It will also allow us to fax an original document without redacting PII data because the new technology automatically encrypts the PII data.
Producers are always welcome to contact the office if you have any questions. You can call 573-324-3313 or stop at the office at 1220 Business 61 South in Bowling Green, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.