Extension announced for floodplain easement assistance
Posted: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 8:01 pm
The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is extending the sign-up period — until April 10 — for funding available to eligible Tennessee landowners through the floodplain easement component of the Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP).
“This funding is important to helping revitalize our economy and at the same time recover land damaged or threatened by flooding,” said NRCS State Conservationist Kevin Brown. The purpose of the funding is to restore frequently flooded land to its natural state and create jobs. The funding is available through President Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and includes both technical and financial assistance.
“President Obama wants to make sure that landowners impacted by the recent flooding in states like North Dakota and Minnesota are given ample opportunity to apply for this assistance,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “This extension is part of USDA’s plan to mitigate the impact of future flooding by restoring the landscape to its natural hydrology and native vegetation.”
Floodplains generate many public benefits, such as increased flood protection, enhanced fish and wildlife habitat, improved water quality and a reduced need for future public disaster assistance. Other benefits include reduced energy consumption when certain agricultural activities and practices are eliminated and increased carbon sequestration as permanent native vegetative cover is re-established.
All eligible landowners in Tennessee are encouraged to sign-up for the funding by visiting their local NRCS office. The sign-up, originally announced March 7, will close April 10. Interested landowners can contact their local USDA Service Center for more information or visit http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/programs/ewp/Floodplain/index.html.
Published in The Messenger 3.31.09
Natural Resources Conservation Service