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Comparison of the Senate-passed and House-passed Farm Bills

Regarding the Commodity titles, the House bill includes language to specifically reauthorize various programs, whereas the Senate bill’s approach to reauthorizing programs is primarily to change the dates of authorization in statute.  It’s a structural difference, but we make note of this because there will be some provisions noted below in one bill but not in the other.  Below, we have noted some of the key highlights of similarities and differences between the two bills.  Following those highlights is a more detailed side-by-side table to show how the bills compare.

 

Commodity Title Highlights

  • Agriculture Risk Coverage
    • Senate bill reauthorizes ARC-Individual; House bill does not
    • Senate bill allows very large counties the opportunity to split into smaller subunits; House bill does not
    • Both bills contain administrative changes to ARC, like being directive in the source of data used, and use of the physical location of a farm for determining payments
    • Senate bill increases the plug yield from 70 percent of the transition yield to 75 percent, as well as requires the use of a trend-adjusted yield; House bill does not
  • Price Loss Coverage
    • Both bills maintain the current statutory reference price
    • House bill allows for reference prices to increase if the 5 year Olympic average market price rises 15 percent above statutory reference prices; Senate bill does not
    • House bill allows producers that experienced extensive drought between 2008 and 2012 to update their payments yields in PLC; Senate bill does not
  • Base acres
    • House bill requires that any farm with base acres that weren’t planted to a covered commodity at any point between 2009 and 2016 to become unassigned base and ineligible for payments; Senate bill does not
    • Senate bill requires USDA to conduct an analysis about the impact of the 2014 Farm Bill base reallocation; House bill does not
  • Farm program eligibility requirements
    • Senate bill imposes new “actively engaged” restrictions on eligibility and allows for up to just one “farm manager” to be eligible for payments based on “active personal management”; House bill allows for additional entities to be eligible for payments, and expands the definition of family members to include nieces/nephews, and cousins
    • Senate bill reduces the Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) threshold for farm program eligibility from $900,000 to $700,000.

Conservation Title Highlights

  • Overall Title Funding
    • Both the House and Senate Bill have substantial funding for conservation, but only the Senate has the same overall amount of funding for conservation.  The House bill redirects about $800 million in conservation funding to programs outside the conservation title.
  • EQIP/CSP
    • The House bill combines EQIP and CSP and provides overall funding at about $3 billion per year (a gradual increase over time)
    • The Senate bill keeps CSP separate and lowers the annual acreage cap, and adds several new provisions.
  • CRP
    • CRP rental rates are modified (lowered) in both the House and Senate bill.  House 80% of county average, Senate 88.5%.  The lowering of the rental payments allows for more acres in the program.  Both bills expand the acreage cap – Senate 25 million acres, House 29 million acres.
    • The Senate bill makes major modifications to CRP including establishing continuous sign-up and CREP into law and specifying how the money can be used.  It also establishes an easement program for SAFE and CLEAR (new program) continuous sign-up after one 10-year contract (or renewal at a 40% decrease in rental rate).
  • RCCP
    • The Senate bill makes major modifications to the Regional Conservation Partnership Program, to allow for expansion and changes to how producers can be involved (outside normal USDA conservation programs).
  • Wetland Conservation
    • Both the House and Senate bills have provisions related to minimal effects determinations of wetlands, providing direction to USDA. The Senate bill also addresses on-site wetland determinations and the House adds funding for wetland mitigation banking.

Credit Title Highlights

  • Loan Authorization Levels
    • The House Bill reauthorizes current loan authorization levels while the Senate bill makes substantial increases in total loan authorization.

Crop Insurance Title Highlights

  • 508(h) reimbursements
    • House bill changes the reimbursement requirements for applicants for new crop insurance policies through the 508(h) process; Senate bill does not
    • Both bills require USDA to undertake research and development of new methods for incorporating quality losses into producers’ crop insurance policies
  • Grazing provision
    • House bill allows for producers with a wheat crop that is both grazed and mechanically harvested to purchase crop insurance coverage separately for those phases of the growing cycle; Senate bill does not
  • Senate bill allows producers to combine enterprise units that cross county lines; House bill does not
  • Whole Farm Revenue incentives
    • Senate bill provides incentives for agents to sell Whole Farm Revenue coverage; House bill does not
  • Sodsaver
    • Senate bill expands sodsaver by restricting conversion of native sod for hay production, and it allows the governor of any state to opt into sodsaver requirements; House bill does not

Research & Technology Highlights

  • NEW – Senate Bill authorizes an advanced research and development authority pilot program aimed at overcoming challenges related to long-term and high-risk agricultural and food related research and development. Called AGARDA – means the Agriculture Advanced Research and Development Authority.
  • SCAB Initiative authorized in both Bills. Senate Bill increases the authorization to $15M, House Bill remains the same at $10M.
  • NEW – In both Bills, Genomics to Phenomics Initiative with the goal to expand knowledge concerning genomes and phenomes of crops of importance to US, including wheat.

 

 

Senate-Passed Farm Bill

Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018

House Farm Bill

Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018

Title 1 – Commodities Title 1 – Commodities
Section 1102 – Producer Election. (Different from the House bill, the Senate amends current law to extend the authorities of ARC and PLC through the 2023 crop year). This provision allows for producers to make a new program election starting with the 2019 crop year. Section 1111 – Definitions. This section defines terms for various provisions authorizing ARC and PLC.  It includes reference price levels, including the $5.50 reference price for wheat.  Additionally, this provision contains a new “Effective Reference” price definition; this new term enables reference prices to increase if the 5 year Olympic average market year average price is 115% of the reference price.
Section 1103 – Price Loss Coverage.  Requires the Secretary to publish the payment rate within 30 days following the end of the marketing year for each covered commodity.  
Section 1104 – Agriculture Risk Coverage. Increases the plug yield from 70 percent of the transitional yield to 75 percent of the transitional yield; requires the Secretary to calculate and use a trend-adjusted yield factor; requires the Secretary to publish the ARC payment rate within 30 days following the end of the marketing year for each covered commodity; requires the use of yield data from a source with the greatest coverage of county-level data (similar provision in Section 1117 of the House bill); requires the calculation of separate actual crop revenue and ARC guarantees for irrigated and non-irrigated production in counties where there is at least 5 percent of both types of production (upon request of county FSA committee); requires the publishing of information describing ARC formula components within 30 days of the end of the marketing year; beginning with the 2018 crop year, the Secretary is required to publish the source of data yields for calculating ARC yields Section 1117 – Agriculture Risk Coverage.  This provision specifies the requirements for triggering PLC payments.  The parameters are similar to current law, where if the actual crop revenue for the crop year is less than the ARC guarantee, a payment is triggered.  The ARC guarantee is equal to 86 percent of the benchmark revenue, and payments are made up to 10 percent of the ARC guarantee (on up to 85 percent of base acres).  It specifies that payments shall be made beginning October 1, or as soon as practicable thereafter, after the end of the marketing year.  It requires calculation of separate revenue and guarantees for irrigated and nonirrigated covered commodities.  It requires the use of RMA data in calculating yields if sufficient data is available.
Section 1106 – Option to change producer election.  For the 2021 crop year, producers would have the option to make a new one-time change to their farm program election, which would be applicable through the 2023 crop year. Section 1115 – Producer Election.  This provision provides for producers to make a 1-time, irrevocable election on a covered-commodity-by-covered-commodity basis, which will be applicable for the 2019-2023 crop years.  Should all producers on a farm fail to make a unanimous election choice, the farmers will be deemed to have elected PLC for the 2020-2023 crop years (and receive no payment for the 2019 crop year).
Section 1707 – Base acres review.  This section requires the Secretary to review the establishment, calculation, reallocation, adjustments, and reduction of base acres that was undertaken in the 2014 Farm Bill and submit a report to Congress about such within 2 years. Section 1112 – Base Acres. This provision requires that the sum of the base acres on a farm not exceed the sum of actual cropland acreage of the farm.  It would also require that if no covered commodities were planted (or prevented from being planted) on a farm with base acres between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2017, that those base acres become “unassigned base” and ineligible for farm program payments.
Section 1113 – Payment Yields.  Among other things, this provision would allow producers in counties experiencing D4 drought for 20 or more consecutive weeks between January 1, 2008 and December 31, 2012, to have a one-time opportunity to update, on a covered-commodity-by-covered-commodity basis, the payment yield for calculating PLC payments.
Section 1114 – Payment Acres.  Specifies that PLC and ARC payments will continue to be made on 85 percent of base acres.  Payments are prohibited on farms of less than 10 acres, unless the aggregate of base acres of all farms of the producers is more than 10 acres.  The provision requires USDA to maintain information on base acres allocated as unassigned crop base.
Section 1116 – Price Loss Coverage.  This provision specifies the requirements for triggering PLC payments.  If the effective price for the covered commodity for the crop year is less than the effective reference price, then a payment is triggered equaling the difference (up to 85 percent of base).  It specifies that payments shall be made beginning October 1, or as soon as practicable thereafter, after the end of the marketing year.
Section 1118 – Producer Agreements.  This provision continues conservation compliance requirements for eligibility for Title 1 payments.
Section 1201 – Extensions.  Extends current law marketing assistance loans, including loan rates and LDPs. Section 1201 – Availability of Nonrecourse Marketing Assistance Loans for Loan Commodities.  This provision continues the authorization of MALs and LDPs.
Section 1202 – Loan Rates for Nonrecourse Marketing Assistance Loans.  This provision specifies loan rates, including $2.94 for wheat.
Section 1203 – Term of Loans.  Continues that marketing assistance loans shall have a term of 9 months beginning on the first day of the next month after the loan is made.
Section 1204 – Repayment of Loans.  This section sets the terms for repayment of marketing assistance loans.  It gives USDA the ability to modify the repayment rate in the event of a severe disruption to marketing transportation, or related infrastructure.
Section 1205 – Loan Deficiency Payments.  This provision provides for the availability of LDPs.
Section 1206 – Payments in Lieu of Loan Deficiency Payments for Grazed Acreage.  This provision allows for producers that would be eligible for an LDP for wheat, barley, or oats, but that elects to use that acreage for grazing livestock, to receive a payment if the producers agrees to forgo any other harvesting of those crops on that acreage.  The provision also prohibits producers that elect such an agreement from being eligible for a crop insurance indemnity.
Section 1210 – Adjustments of Loans.  This provision authorizes USDA to make appropriate adjustments in the loan rates for any loan commodity (other than cotton) for differences in grade, type, quality, location, and other factors.  It gives the Secretary the authority (but not obligation) to establish loan rates for a crop for producers in individual counties in a manner that results in the lowest loan rate being 95 percent of the national average loan rate, if those loan rates do not result in an increase in outlays; additionally, adjustments shall not result in an increase in the national average loan rate for any year.  Additionally, this provision extends the authority for the use of commodity certificates.
Section 1703 – Implementation.  This provision includes streamlining requirements intended to make farm program participation easier for farmers.
Section 1704 – Definition of significant contribution of active personal management.  This section defines this term as active personal management activities performed by a person with a direct or indirect ownership interest in the farming operation on a regular, continuous, and substantial basis to the farming operation, and that meet at least one of the following to be considered significant: (A) are performed for at least 25 percent of the total management hours required for the farming operation on an annual basis; (B) Are performed for at least 500 hours annually for the farming operation.  This provision is similar to current regulations from FSA that were implemented by FSA via rulemaking in 2015. Section 1603 – Payment limitations.  This section addresses the treatment of qualified pass through entities for purposes of eligibility for farm programs.
Section 1705 – Actively engaged in farming requirement.  This section requires that no more than 1 person or legal entity shall be considered “actively engaged” in farming by using active personal management.  
Section 1706 – Adjusted gross income limitation. Under current law, farmers with more than $900,000 in adjusted gross income are ineligible for farm program payments.  This section would lower that threshold to $700,000.  
 
Senate Passed HR 2 – Conservation House Passed HR 2 – Conservation
Section 2412 & 2413  – Wetland Conversion & Delineation

Clarifies that no person shall become ineligible for USDA programs if an exemption applies for wetland conversions.

Requires USDA to provide training on minimal effects exemption within 1 year

 

Section 2101 & 2102 – Wetland Conservation

Requires USDA to issue minimal effects exemptions from wetlands conservation compliance regulations within in 180 days.  Provides authorization for appropriations for wetland mitigation banking  – $5 million per year for FY19-23

Section  – 2101

CRP is reauthorized for the next 5 years with the cap increased  of up to 25 million acres.  The bill establishes continuous sign-up into law (previously an administrative action) and creates Continuous Sign-up funding pools

o   State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE): 30% of acres

o   Clean Lakes Estuaries and Rivers Priority: Enrollment of water quality practices (grass sod waterway, contour grass sod strip, prairie strip, filterstrip, riparian buffer, wetland or wetland buffer, saturated buffer, a bioreactor or similar practice): 40% of acres

Under State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE), States or Tribes can request designation, with priority for habitat for declining populations, T&E species & wildlife corridors

 

Section 2201 – Conservation Reserve Program

Increases the CRP cap by 1 million acres each year, up to 29 million acres.  Grasslands acres increased to a total of 3 million acres within the 29 million acre cap;

 

Section  – 2101

CRP is reauthorized for the next 5 years with the cap increased  of up to 25 million acres.  The bill establishes continuous sign-up into law (previously an administrative action) and creates Continuous Sign-up funding pools

o   State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE): 30% of acres

o   Clean Lakes Estuaries and Rivers Priority: Enrollment of water quality practices (grass sod waterway, contour grass sod strip, prairie strip, filterstrip, riparian buffer, wetland or wetland buffer, saturated buffer, a bioreactor or similar practice): 40% of acres

Under State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE), States or Tribes can request designation, with priority for habitat for declining populations, T&E species & wildlife corridors

 

Section 2201 – Conservation Reserve Program

Increases the CRP cap by 1 million acres each year, up to 29 million acres.  Grasslands acres increased to a total of 3 million acres within the 29 million acre cap;

 

Section 2103 Duties of the Secretary

Program modified to allow cost-share and rental payments include fencing and other water distribution practices. Harvesting, grazing and other commercial use of forage allowed without penalty for drought, flood and responding to a state emergency (drought or wildlife) .  Managed harvesting (as part of contract with a 25% reduction for the acres covered by the activity) not allowed on more than 1/3 of the acres covered by all the CRP contracts during any year.  Grazing permitted (as part of the contract with a 25% reduction for the acres covered by the activity) not more than once every 3 years on the same land – if contract covers more than 20 acres, grazing not allowed on more than 1/3 of the acres covered by all the CRP contracts of the owner or operator to be grazed during any one year – if contract < 20 acres, grazing allowed on all of the land covered by the contract at 25% of the stocking rate permitted under the livestock forage disaster program with veteran and beginning farm or rancher allowed to graze without reduction in rental rate. Harvesting and grazing subject to appropriate plans outlining timing of activities.

 

If land has been rated by the drought monitor as D2 or greater for not less than 1 month during the normal grazing period for the 3 previous consecutive years, the land shall not be eligible for harvesting or grazing that year. Harvesting and grazing can determine that the activity should not take place in a given year if there will be damage to vegetative cover.  SAFE acres are eligible for harvesting and grazing. CREP acres are eligible for harvesting and grazing.

 

Section 2104  – Payments

CRP payments are capped at 88.5% of county rental rates (determined by NASS).  Signing incentive payments and practices incentive payments are only permitted if the national average market price received by producers during the previous 12 month marketing year for major covered commodities is greater than the national average market price received by producers during the most recent 10 marking years for major covered commodities.

 

Wellhead protection payments to  rural water district or association  are not subject to payment limits or AGI limits.

Section 2205 – Payments

CRP payments are capped at 80% of county rental rates (determined by NASS); with the 1st re-enrollment reduced an additional 15% and subsequent re-enrollments reduced another 10%. Signing Incentive Payments (SIPs) and Practice Incentive Payments (PIPs) are eliminated. Decrease cost share to 40% from 50% and limit seed payment to 25% of the cost of seed. Increase flexibility of grazing as a mid-contract management practice. Decrease federal share of Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (joint program with states)

 

Section 2105 Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program

Establishes the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program into law (currently administrative action by USDA); Eligible partner can be state, political subdivision of a state, Indian tribe, NGO, institute of higher learning, state cooperative extension, research institute; agreement with partner must describe conservation concerns, conservation practices (and modifications to standards), environmental goals, acreage goals, location of land to be enrolled and payment to be offered by USDA and the partner. Funds provided by a partner may be cash, in-kind or technical assistance.  New provision allows for cost-share payment to an owner or operator to install stream fencing, crossing, and alternative water development on marginal pastureland under a program to reflect fair market value of the cost of installation.  Cost share payments authorized and can be assigned to eligible partner.  Riparian buffer maintenance payments to encourage regular management and shall not be greater than 100% of the management cost

Food producing woody plants can be part of forested riparian buffers

 

20% of continuous acres

 

 
Section 2106 Contracts

Eliminates early termination provisions

CRP TIP modified to “contract holder” instead of retired or retiring owner or operator” and allows access 2 years prior to the date of termination of the contract; clarifies the covered farmer can have a lease with a term of less than 5 years (instead of just a long-term lease) and includes transition to CSP, EQIP and easements

 

Creates a new Conservation Reserve Easement option for contracts that are entered into between FY2019 and September 30, 2023. Only applies to land under contracts enrolled in continuous sign-up under the Clean Lakes, Estuaries and Rivers priority and the SAFE acres. Starting in 2029 when the 2019 contracts expire, producers have the option to re-enroll at 40% reduced annual rental payment (with no incentive payments) or enter into a conservation reserve easement or not to reenroll. If the Secretary determines that the land is not suitable for an easement, the producer may reenroll in CRP

 

Section 2206 – Contracts

Allow for early termination of contracts in 2019 if meeting certain requirements.  CRP TIP is amended to allow for the covered farmers and owner to make conservation land improvements 1 year before the end of the contract.  Allows for transition to organic production 3 years before the end of the contract.

Producers in the final year of CRP contracts can enter into the EQIP contract.

 

CRP Tip is continued

 

Section 2107 – Conservation Reserve Easements

Creation of the Conservation Reserve Easements for a term that is permanent, or the maximum period allowed by state law.  Under the easement, the landowner agrees to deed restrictions and permanently retire any base history for the land covered by the easement.  The easement would prohibit alteration of wildlife habitat, and any action on adjacent land that would adversely impact the land under the easement, or other practices that would tend to defeat the purpose of the program. Compatible uses allowed – hunting, fishing, managed timber harvest or periodic haying or grazing.  USDA shall pay the lowest of fair market value, an offer made by the landowner, or a USDA set geographical limitation. Payments can be made in 1 payment or up to 10 annual payments.  USDA may enter into agreements with private entities, states, tribes, or NGOs to carry out maintenance of an easement.  USDA will develop a conservation reserve easement plan to include the practices and activities necessary to maintain, protect and enhance the conservation value of the land.  USDA can delegate easement administration (management, monitoring and enforcement) to federal, state or local government agencies or conservation organizations

 
Section 2108 – Eligible Land

Allows USDA in consultation with a State Technical Committee to wave CRP program ineligibility related to: Federal Lands;; and land regulated by a tribe, state or local requirement for conservation practices and the owners and operators of the such land have been notified in writing of such requirements

 
Conservation Stewardship Program – reauthorized Conservation Stewardship Program – eliminated
Section 2201 – Definitions

Adds development of a comprehensive conservation plan, soil health planning and mitigation against weather volatility as conservation activities for CSP.  Adds descriptions to setting the Stewardship Threshold as using quality criteria under a resource management system, predictive analytics tools, data from past and current enrollment of the program

 
Section 2202 – Establishment

Extends the program through 2023

 
Section 2203 – Stewardship Contracts

Provides for new ranking of applications to include the natural resource conservation and environmental benefits on all applicable priority resource concerns, and the degree to which the proposed activities will increase the benefits. USDA can select the lowest cost application.

 

 
Section 2204 – Duties of Secretary

Allows for enrollment of 8,797,000 acres each year

New payment for cover crops that are not less than 125% of the annual payment amount, and new supplemental payments not less than 150% of the annual payment for resource conserving crop rotations and advanced grazing management, new payment for development of comprehensive conservation plan

New allocation of funds to states to support organic production and transition to organic production

Secretary directed to manage the program to enhance soil health

 
   
EQIP – reauthorizes program and makes modifications EQIP – reauthorizes program and makes modifications, adds stewardship payments
Section 2301 – Purposes

Adds drought resiliency measures to purposes and changes wording of existing provisions to remove “cost effective”

Section 2302 Definitions

Adds new conservation planning survey to assess rangeland and cropland function and describes conservation activities to enhance the economic and ecological management of that land; adds soil tests for heavy metals, volatile organic compounds, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and other contaminates and biological and physical soil heath as conservation practices under EQIP; adds scientifically based soil remediation practices as a conservation practice under EQIP.

Adds conservation activities: resource conserving crop rotation planning, soil health planning and conservation planning survey.

Section 2301 Definitions

Continues the EQIP program and adds the “CSP type” definitions to EQIP by defining priority resources concern as a national state, or local level priority for an area of a state that represents a significant concern.  Defines stewardship practice as a practice or set of practices approved by the Secretary that when implemented and maintained on eligible land address one or more priority resource concerns.

Section 2303 Establishment and Administration

Allows for 10 year contracts for management practices that benefit wildlife, including post-harvest flooding and seasonal wetlands.  Disadvantaged farmers will receive 90% cost share and have 180 days to spend advanced payment funds (up from 90 days)

The secretary shall review all cost share rates and conservation practice standards within 1 year of enactment

States, in consultation with state technical committees can designate 10 practices for increased payments of not more than 90% of the costs associated with planning, design, materials, equipment, installation, labor, management, maintenance or training.

The livestock funding set aside is reduced from 60% to 50%

The wildlife habitat funding set aside is increased from 5% to at least 10%.

USDA directed to review the process for determining annual funding allocation to the states

Modifies water conservation and irrigation system efficiency payments to allow USDA to enter into contracts with a state, irrigation district, water management district, acequia or similar entity to streamline contracting and USDA can waive AGI and payment limits.

Increase the payment limit for transition to organic production to $160,000 over the 5 years of the bill.

Establishes a new micro-EQIP pilot program that allows up to 10 states to establish a program that provides financial and technical assistance to small-scale agricultural producers

Section 2302 Establishment

Adds stewardship payments for adopting, installing, managing, maintaining and improving stewardship practices with payments based on the level and extent of the practice, the cost of installation, income foregone and the extent to which compensation would ensure long-term continued maintenance, management, and improvement of the stewardship practice. Stewardship Payments are limited to $50,000 per year; and the overall EQIP payment limit of $450,000 over 5 years (FY19-23) remains (can have multiple contracts – stewardship type and regular EQIP type). Of the total EQIP funding provided each year, not more than 50% is to be used for stewardship payments.  The historical EQIP split of 60% livestock/40% crop funding is eliminated.

Section 2304 Evaluation of Applications

Adds provision to give priority to applications that use the most effective practices to address natural resource concerns

 
Section 2305 Duties of the Secretary

Directs USDA to streamline and coordinate EQIP and CSP

 
Section 2306 Environmental Quality Incentives Program Plan

Slight modification

 
Section 2307 Limitation on Payments

Extends current $450,000 payment limitation

 
Section 2308 Conservation Innovation Grants and Payments

Adds urban, indoor and other emerging ag practices; adds edge of field monitoring to the types of projects

Incudes $25 million per year for Air Quality issues

Section 2304 Conservation Innovation Grants and Payments

$25 million is provided for Conservation Innovation Grants administered by NRCS, $37.5 million is provided for Air Quality issues in EQIP; $25 million is provided for new On-Farm Conservation Innovation Trials directly with producers or eligible entities (third party private entity the primary business of which is related to agriculture).

Section 2309 Soil Health Demonstration Pilot Project

New provision directs USDA to carryout a soil health demonstration pilot project by providing producers financial incentives to adopt practices to improve soil health and to report back to congress.  $15 million from EQIP funding is dedicated to this pilot.

 
OTHER CONSERVATION PROGRAMS OTHER CONSERVATION PROGRAMS
Section 2401 Wetland Conservation

Clarifies that on-site visits should be in the presence of the affected person

 
Section 2403 Conservation of Private Grazing Land

Program is reauthorized through 2023

Section 2401 Conservation of Private Grazing Land

Program is reauthorized through 2023

Section 2404 Soil Health and Income Protection Program

New standalone program for improving soil, water, and wildlife resources with 3, 4, or 5 year contracts for up to 15% of eligible land on a farm.

Sign-up can only be held the first crop year beginning after the date of enactment.  Payment is 50% of the average CRP rental rate.  Appropriations authorized to fund the program

 

 
Section 2405 Grassroots Source Water Protection Program

Program is continued with appropriations authorized for $25 million per year

Section 2402 Grassroots Source Water Protection Program

Program is funding with $5 million and appropriations authorized through 2023

Section 2406 Soil Testing and Remediation Assistance

New program to mitigate the presence of contaminates in the soil and expands the scope of those eligible to include “small-scale” producers of food. USDA & EPA shall coordinate the development of a soil health testing protocol including:

o   optimum level of constituents in and characteristics of the soil such as organic matter, nutrients, and the potential of soil contamination from heavy metals, volatile organic compounds, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon or other contaminants

o   biological and physical characteristics indicative of proper soil functioning.

USDA will provide technical assistance to a producer carrying out a soil assessment or soil remediation practice

 

 
Section 2407 Voluntary Public Access Program

Reauthorized and funded at $40 million for the life of the bill.

Section 2403 Voluntary Public Access and Habitat Incentive Program

Funding of $50 million is provided for the life of this bill.

Section 2408 Agriculture Conservation Experienced Services Program

Program terminates effective October 1, 2023.

 
Section 2409 Remote Telemetry Data System

Recommendation that EQIP should encourage the use of remote telemetry data systems for irrigation scheduling as a best management practice.

 
Section 2415 Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention

Authorizes appropriations of $200 million per year with $20 million in funding provided each fiscal year.

 

Section 2404 Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention (PL566)

Funding of $100 million each fiscal year is provided.

Section 2405 Feral swine eradication and control pilot program

Creates a joint NRCS/APHIS program to study, assess, develop methods for eradication, develop methods for restoration of damage and provide financial assistance. Funding of $10 million is provided for the life of this bill.

Section 2414 Emergency Conservation Program

Maximum payment under ECP is $500,000, authorizes appropriations and creates a set-aside of 25% of funding per year for repair or replacement of fencing.

Section 2406 Emergency conservation program

Adds provision on repair and replacement of fencing to the Emergency Conservation Program and includes a 75% cost share rate and limits total assistance to less than 50% of the agricultural value of the land.

Section 2408 Soil and water resources conservation

Updates a provision for a Resource Conservation assessment by NRCS by December 31, 2023. Adds provision for conservation effects assessment project to quantify the environmental and economic effects of conservation practices. Establishes a national technical committee of USDA agencies, USGS, land grants, state agencies and others to guide in the monitoring and program evaluation to assess conservation programs progress in meeting goals.

Section 2501 – Funding

$33 million for CRP-TIP

$400 million for Agricultural Conservation Easements (FY19-21); $425 million (FY2022) and $450 million (FY2023)

$1.473 billion for EQIP in FY19

$1.478 billion for EQIP in FY20

$1.541 billion for EQIP in FY21

$1.571 billion for EQIP in FY22

$1.595 billion for EQIP in FY23

Assistance to certain farmers and ranchers increased from 5% to 15%

Directs FSA to be consistent with the standards and requirements established by NRCS (practice standards, technical guides, payment rates for conservation practices)

Section 2501 – Funding

$33 million for CRP-TIP

$500 million per year for Agricultural Conservation Easements

$2 billion for EQIP in FY19

$2.5 billion for EQIP in FY20

$2.75 billion for EQIP in FY21

$2.935 billion for EQIP in FY22

$3 billion for EQIP in FY23

Regional Equity is eliminated

Section 2502 Delivery of Technical Assistance

Third Party Provider defined as: a commercial entity (including a farmer cooperative, agriculture retailer, or other commercial entity, as determined by the Secretary), a nonprofit entity, a state, a unit of local government (including a conservation district), or a Federal agency, that has expertise in a technical aspect of conservation planning, including nutrient management planning, watershed planning or environmental engineering

USDA shall certify third party providers and have streamlined certification for sustainability specialty certification and a 4R nutrient management specialty certification

Expedited revision of conservation standards

 

Section 2502 Delivery of Technical Assistance

Creates new certification for CCAs

Section 2503 Administrative requirements for conservation programs

Exemption from Dun and SAMs requirement applied to commodities in addition to conservation

Sourcewater protection practices encouraged in EQIP

Payments to acequias – AGI waived

 

Section 2503 Administrative requirements for conservation programs

Secretary directed to encourage practices that protect drinking water sources

Section 2504 Definition of Acequia

Political subdivision of a state; organized for the purpose of managing the operation of an irrigation ditch; and does not have the authority to impose taxes or levies

 

 
Section 2505 Authorization of Appropriations for Water Bank Program

Authorizes $5 million per year

 

 
Section 2506 Report on Land Access, Tenure, and Transition  
Section 2507 Report on Small Wetlands

Report on the number of wetlands with an area not more than 1 acre that have been delineated in each of the states of North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Iowa.

 

 
Agricultural Conservation Easement Program Agricultural Conservation Easement Program
Section 2410 Agricultural Conservation Easement Program Section 2601 Establishment and purposes
Continues the easement program and makes a few modification to allow eligible land to be owned by eligible entity; allows nonfederal share of agricultural land easement to be a charitable donation, costs associated with security a deed (appraisal, survey, inspection, title) or other costs approved by USDA. Agricultural land easement plans are required, updated accreditation requirements.

Wetland Reserve Easements – Adds Native vegetation and adds land owned by an acequia

 

Section 2602 Definitions

Eliminates the agricultural land easement plan, adds forest land into the eligible land, defines monitoring report

Section 2603 Agricultural Land Easements

Modifies existing program to define non-federal share as cash, charitable donation or other federal funding (non USDA); for grassland easements of special environmental significance USDA can provide 70%; modifies the agreement with eligible entities to say that UDA does not have a right of enforcement unless a monitoring report is submitted; allows for mineral development; allows for participation in environmental services markets; revises certification criteria for eligible entities.

Section 2604 Wetland Reserve Easements

Program reauthorized with a few modifications including allowing for grazing management plans on wetland easements

Section 2605 Administration

Alters provision on modification and termination of easements; AGI limits don’t apply to landowners from which an easement is to be purchased

Regional Conservation Partnership Program  – reauthorized and expanded Regional Conservation Partnership Program – program is reauthorized and expanded
Section 2411 Regional Conservation Partnership Program

Significant modifications to the partnership program to allow for flexibility in the use of program funds and a streamlined application process.  Eligible activities are activities under the covered programs (EQIP, CSP, Easements) and other related activity that an eligible partner determines will help address natural resource concerns, subject to the approval of the Secretary (source water protection, soil health, drought resilience)

Expands partner contributions can include: direct funding, in-kind support  or a combination; and “any amounts expended during the period beginning on the date on which the Secretary announces the approval of an application and ending on the day before the effective date of the partnership agreement by an eligible partner for staff salaries to development of the partnership agreement shall be considered to be a part of the contribution”

USDA directed to establish a program coordinator for the state to be responsible for providing assistance to eligible partners and eligible producers

USDA to provide semiannual reports to each partner with the status of pending and obligated contracts and how technical assistance was used

Partners can use new or modified conservation practice standards

New program provisions add grant agreements for: infrastructure investments; projects addressing water quality or quantity; innovative financing/leveraging federal investment; pilot testing of new conservation practices; sustainability & long term viability of ag through land and water protection strategies

o   Grant agreements not subject to AGI

o   Not more than 30% of the overall program funding

o   Annual reports required

Increased funding compared to baseline $200 million per year plus 7% of covered program funding (CSP, EQIP, Easements)

o   40% of funds for state based or multi state based competition

o   60% of funds for Critical Conservation Area competition

o   Eliminates national competition

Secretary is to directed to limit technical assistance funds used by USDA and make the amount public (to lower implantation/administrative cost by USDA)

Critical Conservation Area defined as the geographic area that contains a critical conservation condition that can be addressed through the program

Critical Conservation Condition defined as: condition of the land that would benefit for water quality improvement; water quantity improvement ; drought, water retention and flood control

 

Section 2701 Definitions

Adds CRP and PL566 as covered programs (in addition to EQIP and Agricultural Land Easements); and adds resource conserving crop rotations and protecting source waters for drinking water as eligible activities for the program

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Section 2702 Regional conservation partnerships

Directs USDA to simplify the application process and allow for an expedited renewal of partnership agreements

Section 2703 Assistance to producers

Allows the secretary to waive AGI limitations and limitations on the maximum amount of payments for any covered program

Section 2704 Funding

Increases funding for the program to $250 million per year and eliminates the 7% “donation” from covered programs

Section 2705 Administration

USDA directed to provide guidance to eligible partners and producers on how to quantify and report on environmental outcomes of the projects/conservation practices

Section 2706 Critical conservation areas
Section 2402 Conservation Security Program

Old CSP program is repealed (original program)

Section 2801 Repeal of conservation security and conservation stewardship programs

Programs repealed, but existing contracts will be honored/continued, but cannot be renewed

Section 2802 Repeal of terminal lakes assistance

Repeal of program

Section 2417 Repeal of Conservation Corridor Demonstration Program  
Section 2418 Repeal of Cranberry Acreage Reserve Program  
Section 2419 Repeal of National Natural Resources Foundation  
Section 2420 Repeal of Flood Risk Reduction  
Section 2421 Repeal of Study of Land use for expiring contracts and extension of authority  
Section 2422 Repeal of Integrated Farm Management Program Option  
Section 2423 Repeal of Clarification of Definition of Agricultural Lands  
Section 2424 Resources Conservation and Development Program

RC&D program terminates October 1, 2023

 
Section 2425 Wildlife Management

Expansion of Working Lands for Wildlife Model between USDA and DOI.  Regulatory certainty related to the adoption of conservation practices and the Endangered Species Act

 

 
Section 2426 Healthy Forests Reserve Program  
Section 2427 Watershed Protection

Adds flexibility for larger watershed to address drought and creates waiver of the watershed plan.

 
Section 2429 Modifications to Conservation Easement Program

Modification or exchange of a Wetland Reserve Easements for water management, general maintenance, vegetative cover control, wildlife habitat management of other purpose if the modification is approved by a state department of natural resources and the state technical committee

No additional costs

 

 
Title V: Credit Title V: Credit
Section 5101- Modification of the 3-Year Experience Requirement for Purposes of Eligibility for Farm Ownership Loans. Modification of the 3-year experience requirement for purposes of eligibility for farm ownership loans. Defines acceptable experience as:

·        at least 16 hours of post-secondary education in a field related to agriculture;

·        successful completion of a farm management curriculum offered by the Cooperative Extension Service, a community college, an adult vocational agriculture program, a non-profit organization, or a land grant university;

·        at least 1 year of direct substantive management experience in a business;

·        an honorable discharge from the armed forces of the United States;

·        successful repayment of a youth loan made under section 311(b);

·        at least 1 year as hired farm labor with substantial management responsibilities;

·        successful completion of a farm mentorship, apprenticeship, or internship program with an emphasis on management requirements and day-to-day farm management decisions;

·        an established relationship with an individual participating as a counselor in a Service Corps of Retired Executives program authorized under section 8(b)(1)(B) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 637(b)(1)(B)), or with a local farm or ranch operator or organization, approved by the Secretary, that is committed to mentoring the farmer or rancher; and

·        successful completion of a military leadership course.

 

Section 5101- Modification of the 3-Year Experience Requirement for Purposes of Eligibility for Farm Ownership Loans. Modification of the 3-year experience requirement for purposes of eligibility for farm ownership loans. Same as Senate version.
Section 5102: Conservation loan and loan guarantee program. $150,000,000 authorization Section 5102: Conservation loan and loan guarantee program. $75,000,000 authorization
Section 5301: Beginning Farmer and Ranch Individual Development Accounts Pilot Program. reauthorized at $5,000,000. Section 5301: Beginning Farmer and Ranch Individual Development Accounts Pilot Program. reauthorized at $5,000,000.
Section 5302- Loan Authorization Levels.

Increased authority to fund not more than 12 billion.

·        $4,000,000,000 shall be for direct loans of which:

-$2,000,000,000 shall be for farm ownership loans

-$2,000,000,000 shall be for farm operating loans

·        $8,000,000,000 shall be for guaranteed loans of which:

-4,000,000,000 shall be for farm ownership loans and

-4,000,000,000 shall be for farm operating loans

Section 5302- Loan Authorization Levels.

Reauthorizes existing funding levels for loan programs through 2023. (levels are lower than the increases seen on the Senate side).

 

Title VII: Research

 

Title VII: Research

Sec. 7114.

Allows for funds appropriated under the section concerning extension at 1890 land-grant colleges to be carried over beyond the previous restriction of 20 percent and requires a report to Congress describing allocations made to and matching state funds received by the institutions eligible for extension.

 

 
Sec. 7115.

Requires a report to Congress concerning agricultural research at 1890 land-grant colleges describing allocations made to and matching state funds received by eligible institutions for agricultural research.

 

Sec. 7106.

Requires the Secretary to submit a report each year on the allocations of Federal funds made to, and matching funds received by, 1890 institutions that receive certain grant funding.

 

Sec. 7116. – Sec. 7117.

Reauthorizes grants for 1890 land-grand colleges and insular area land-grant institutions to upgrade agricultural and food sciences facilities.

 

Sec. 7115 -Sec. 7116. Reauthorizes appropriations through FY23 for grants for 1890 land grant institutions to upgrade agriculture and food sciences facilities.

 

Sec. 7123.

Reauthorizes university research programs, including agricultural research at State agricultural experiment stations.

 

Sec. 7122.

Reauthorizes appropriations through FY23 for research programs focused on agriculture, including research at State agricultural experiment stations.

 

  Sec. 7118.

Prevents additional entities from being designated as eligible to receive land grant funding, and notes that “no state shall receive an increase in funding under a covered program as a result of the State’s designation of additional entities as eligible to receive such funding”.

  Section 7128.

Special Authorization for biosecurity planning and response.

Sec. 7128. (NEW)

Authorizes an advanced research and development authority pilot program aimed at overcoming challenges related to long-term and high-risk agricultural and food related research and development. Establishes the Agriculture Advanced Research and Development Fund in the Treasury and authorizes $50 million for each of fiscal years 2019-2023.

AGARDA.—The term ‘AGARDA’ means the Agriculture Advanced Research and Development Authority.

 

 
Sec. 7133.

Prohibits an increase in the amount of funding a State can receive due to the designation of additional entities as eligible to receive funds under a capacity program. Capacity programs are specified agricultural research, extension, education, and related programs.

 

 
Sec. 7134. (NEW)

Requires the Secretary to establish a grant program to award grants to land grant universities to support individuals intending to pursue a career in food and agricultural sciences. Authorizes $19 million for each fiscal year for 2019-2023.

 

Sec. 7114.

Establishes a grant program for 1890 institutions for individuals who intend to pursue a career in the food and agricultural sciences. Authorizes $19 million each year for fiscal years 2019-2023.

 

SEC. 7206.

National genetics resources program. Continues an advisory council to make recommendations on the state of public cultivar development, including an analysis of existing cultivar research investments; the research gaps relating to the development of cultivars across a diverse range of crops; and an assessment of the state of commercialization of federally funded cultivars; the training and resources needed to meet future breeding challenges; the appropriate levels of Federal funding for cultivar development for underserved crops and geographic areas.

 

 
SEC. 7208.

Agricultural genome to phenome initiative.

Same as House SEC. 7207

Authorizes $30 M to be appropriated to carry out this section for each of fiscal years 2019 through 2023

 

SEC. 7207. (NEW)

Agricultural genome to phenome initiative. Goals are to expand knowledge concerning genomes and phenomes of crops of importance to US; understand how variable weather, environments, and production systems impact the growth and productivity of specific varieties of crops; support research that leverages plant genomic information with phenotypic and environmental data; promote and coordinate research linking genomics and predictive phenomics at different sites nationally to achieve advances in crops that generate societal benefits.

Authorizes $30 M to be appropriated to carry out this section for each of fiscal years 2019 through 2023.

 

SEC. 7209.

High-priority research and extension initiatives.

National turfgrass research initiative

Nutrient management

Macadamia tree health initiative

Chronic wasting disease

Pulse crop health initiative

Pollinator protection

Pollinator health task force.

Enhanced coordination of honeybee and pollinator research

 
Sec. 7213. (NEW)

Requires the establishment of at least three centers of excellence, each led by a land-grant university, to support activities to ensure students have the skills needed to work in the agriculture and food industries, carry out research and education programs, and share best practices with farmers, among other things. Authorizes $10 million annually for fiscal years 2019-2023.

 

 
SEC. 7303.

Support for research regarding diseases of wheat, triticale, and barley caused by fusarium graminearum or by tilletia indica.

Authorizes $15,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2019 through 2023.

 

SEC. 7303. (no change)

Support for research regarding diseases of wheat, triticale, and barley caused by fusarium graminearum or by tilletia indica.

Reauthorizes $10M per year

 

Sec. 7405.

Establishes a competitive grant program to support adaptive protype systems design for extension and education. Entities eligible to receive grants are State agricultural experiment stations and land-grant colleges or universities.

 

 
Sec. 7408.

Repeals the Agricultural Research Service review commissioned in 2003.

 

 
SEC. 7413. (NEW)

Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research (FFAR).

The Foundation is directed to submit to the Committee on Agriculture of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry of the Senate a strategic plan describing a path for the Foundation to become self-sustaining, one year after date of enactment.

 

 
Sec. 7601.

Reinstates the matching requirements for Federal funds in place before the 2014 Farm Bill.

 
  SEC. 7608.

Public education on biotechnology in food and agriculture sectors. The Secretary shall develop and carry out a national science-based education campaign to increase public awareness regarding the use of technology in food and agriculture production, including biotechnology, developments in the science of plant and animal breeding over time and the impacts of such developments on farmers, consumers, the environment, and the rural economy; and the effects of the use of biotechnology on food security, nutrition, and the environment.

 

Title XI:  Crop Insurance Title X: Crop Insurance
Section 11101 – Definitions.  Adds a definition for “cover crop termination” to mean a practice that historically or under reasonable circumstances results in the termination of the growth of a cover crop.  
  Section 10001 – Treatment of forage and grazing.  This provision allows for the availability of catastrophic risk protection for crops and grasses used for grazing.  For crop that can be both grazed and mechanically harvested on the same acres during the same growing season, producers shall be allowed to purchase, and be independently indemnified on, separate policies for each intended use.
  Section 10003 – Prevention of duplicative coverage.  This provision prohibits producers that participate in ARC from purchases crop insurance coverage based on an area yield and loss basis or the Supplemental Coverage Option (SCO).
  Section 10005 – Continued authority.  This provision requires FCIC to establish underwriting rules that limit the decrease in APH of a producer (at the election of the producer) to not more than 10 percent of the APH of the previous crop year provided that the production decline was the result of drought, flood, natural disaster, or other insurable loss (as determined by FCIC); and actuarially sound premiums to cover additional risk.  This authority would be in addition to any other authority that adjusts the APH of the producer.
  Section 10007 – Maintenance of policies.  This provision is intended to fix a problem with reimbursement of development of new crop insurance plans through the 508(h) process.  Specifically, applicants who submit policies through 508(h) shall be eligible for the reimbursement of reasonable and actual research and development costs directly related to the policy if the policy is approved by the FCIC board for sale to producers.  It provides a definition for what is to be considered reasonable and actual costs and sets other parameters for reimbursement.  The provision would apply to reimbursement request made on or after October 1, 2016.  It would also allow all applicants that submitted and were denied requests for reimbursement between October 1, 2016 and enactment of this law the opportunity to resubmit a request for reimbursement.
Section 11104 – Use of resources.  Among other provisions, the section includes a requirement for the Federal Crop Insurance Board to use, the maximum extent practicable, the resources boards, data, and the committees of the NRCS in assisting the FCIC board in the classification of land as to risk and production capability; the assessment of long-term trends in, and impacts from, weather variability; and opportunities to ameliorate those impacts; and the consideration of acceptable conservation practices, including good farming practices with respect to conservation (such as cover crop termination).  
Section 11107 – Cover crops.  Creates a new provision defining voluntary good farming practices, including scientifically sound, sustainable, and organic farming practices, as determined by the Secretary; and a conservation activity or enhancement (including cover crops) that is approved by NRCS or an agricultural expert, as determined by the Secretary.  Such practices would be considered a good farming practice only if under that practice the insured crop may be expected to make normal progress toward maturity under typical growing conditions.  Cover crop termination shall not affect the insurability of a subsequently planted crop if the cover crop termination complies with guidelines established by the Secretary or guidelines approved by NRCS or an agricultural expert.  In counties where summer fallow is an insurable practice, a cover crop in that county that is terminated according to guidelines shall be considered as summer fallow for the purposes of insurability.  
Section 11109 – Expansion of performance-based discount.  Allows (but does not require) the FCIC, beginning with the 2020 reinsurance year, to offer discounts for practices that can be demonstrated to reduce risk relative to other practices.  The FCIC would be required to consider precision irrigation or fertilization, crop rotations, crop rotations, cover crops, and any other practices determined appropriate by the FCIC.  
Section 11110 – Enterprise Units.  The FCIC may (but not require) a producer to establish a single enterprise unit by combining an enterprise unit with 1 or more other enterprise units in 1 or more other counties; or combine an enterprise units with all basic units and all option units in 1 or more other counties.  
Section 11113 – Whole Farm Revenue agent incentives.  Beginning with the 2019 reinsurance year, this provision would allow an agent that sells a Whole Farm Revenue Policy, to be incentivized to sell Whole Farm.  If the agent is compensated less than $1,000 for the sale of a policy, this provision would pay the agent the different between $1,000 and their compensation.  Additionally, for sale of a Whole Farm policy to a producer that hadn’t purchased it before, the agent would get an additional $300 compensation.  
Section 11114 – Crop production on native sod.  This section revises the 2014 Farm Bill sodsaver provision to require that native sod acreage that has been tilled for the production of an insurable hay or forage crop after the date of enactment be subject to 4 cumulative years of a reduction in the crop insurance federal cost-share.  The section requires USDA to producer annual reports to Congress about the tilled native sod acreage that has been certified in each county and state.  The provision is still applicable to the Prairie Pothole states, and it allows the governor of any other state to opt-into this sodsaver requirement.  
Section 11117 – Acreage Report Streamlining Initiative.  This section adds additional requirements to ACRSI, including a directive to RMA and FSA to implement a consistent method for determining crop acreage, acreage yields, farm acreage, property descriptions, and other common informational requirements, including measures of common land units, by September 30, 2020.  It also requires that the AIPs accept from a producer reports of crop acreage, acreage yields, and other information electronically or conventionally, at the option of the producer.  
Section 11118 – Continuing education for loss adjustors and agents.  Requires FCIC to establish requirements for continuing education to ensure that loss adjusters and agents are familiar with appropriate conservation activities and agronomic practices that are common and appropriate to the area in which crop is being grown, and include organic and sustainable practices.  
Section 11122 – Research and development authority.  This section includes several directives to RMA to study and develop various crop insurance options.  Of particular note include the following: Quality Loss – this provision requires research and development regarding the establishment of each of the following alternative methods of adjusting for quality loss: (i) a method that does not impact the average production history of a producer; (ii) a method that is optional for a producer to elect to use; (iii) a method that provides that, in circumstances in which a producer has suffered a quality loss to the insured crop of the producer that is insufficient to trigger an indemnity payment, the producer may elect to exclude that quality loss from the actual production history of the producer; (iv) 1 or more methods that combine 2 or more of the above.  Any method developed would have to be optional for a producer to use and offered at an actuarially sound premium rate.  A report must be sent to Congress within a year of enactment.

 

Other R&D provisions in this section include: a directive to review and modify Whole Farm Revenue to improve it’s effectiveness;

Section 10008 – Research and development priorities.  This section includes the repeal of some previously authorized R&D activities and includes several directives for new R&D activities.  Similar to the Senate bill, the House bill includes a provision directing R&D related to quality loss.  Specifically, the bill directs FCIC to study establishing an alternative method of adjusted for quality losses that does not impact the average production history of producers.  If FCIC uses any method developed as a result of the contract, such method shall be optional for producers to elect to use and shall be offered at an actuarially sound premium rate.

 

Also included is a section to define a beginning farmer or rancher for purchases of Whole Farm Revenue coverage to be a farmer or rancher who has not actively operated and managed a farm or ranch with a bona fide insurable interest in a cro por livestock as an owner-operator, landlord, tenant, or sharecropper for more than 10 crop years.

  Section 10009 – Extension of funding for research and development.  This provision reduces funding for research and development activities from $12.5 million annually to $8 million annually.
  Section 10010 – Education and risk management assistance.  This section creates a new competitive grants program to be administered through NIFA with competitive grants being made to qualified public and private entities (including land-grant colleges, cooperative extension services, and colleges or universities) for the purpose of educating producers about the full range of risk management activities, including futures, options, agricultural trade options, crop insurance, cash forward contracting, debt reduction, production diversification, farm resources risk reduction, farm financial benchmarking, and other risk management strategies.  Special emphasis is to be targeted at beginning farmers/ranchers, legal immigrant farmers/ranchers that are attempting to become established producers in the U.S., socially disadvantaged farmers/ranchers, and farmers that are preparing to retire, are using transition strategies to help new farmers or ranchers get started, and new or established farmers that are converting production and marketing systems to pursue new markets.  $5 million per year is provided for this purpose.
Title XII: Miscellaneous Title XI: Miscellaneous
Section 12504- Data on Conservation Practices. This section creates a secure data collection system through which the Department, pursuant to established privacy and confidentiality protocols, will allow for analysis, and review of data from various agencies regarding the impact of covered conservation practices on crop yields, soil health, and farm and rach profitability. Establishes protocols and procedures to allow for the collection of data from existing Departmental databases and for the voluntary submission of data from producers. Establishes a data warehouse to contain the data collected under this section that can be accessed by an academic institution or researcher. Requires the Risk Management Agency t o work with other agencies to conduct research and analyze how yield variability and risk are impacted by certain conservation practices.