After years of efforts to lay the groundwork for rice growers to participate in the new Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP), the August sign-up period is now in full swing through August 28, 2015. We are pleased that the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has worked closely with us to enable growers to sign-up for this program ahead of the upcoming harvest season.
In early-August, rice growers and landowners were sent a notice inviting them to attend a CRC-hosted workshop to learn about how the new Rice RCPP will work for this first of several years of planned implementation. Basically, we will see a program that closely mirrors the Waterbird Habitat Enhancement Program (WHEP) that has been implemented now for several years. In addition to those familiar practices, we are working to develop a nesting cover crop element that works well for rice growers.
Using this new RCPP framework, the CRC and NRCS hope to introduce these practices to growers/landowners who have not yet tried WHEP. Therefore, new applicants will be preferentially ranked. However, based upon the funding levels dedicated to the program, we anticipate that quality proposals from past WHEP participants will also be considered for funding.
NRCS has recently released its Program Description. Please review this and/or the California NRCS Website for more information. Also, please free to contact the CRC’s Paul Buttner at (916) 206-5340 or email@example.com if you have any questions.