Cost-share Funding Available To Farmers For Water Quality Initiative


(Le Mars) — Farmers and landowners of the Deep Creek watershed drainage area are eligible for some cost-share funds to help improve the water quality. Recently, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship made available $1.8 million dollars to four different watershed projects. According to Kristi Silverthorn, Watershed Coordinator for the Deep Creek watershed drainage region, Deep Creek will receive nearly $500,000 for cost-share purposes. The Deep Creek watershed project starts at Le Mars and continues to the northeast involving Plymouth County, parts of Cherokee, Sioux and O’Brien counties. Silverthorn says the goal is to improve the water quality and to reduce the nitrate run-off utilizing the cost-share funding.

Silverthorn says the cost-share program is available to both new farmers and those who previously had enrolled in the water quality initiative program.

Silverthorn says at present time there are 20 farmers that have signed up for the cost-share program, but she is encouraging others to study the program, and participate.  The watershed coordinator explains the breakdown for the cost-share program.

Eligible farmers must first get approval by the soil and water conservation districts before any action can take place. But she says the deadline to enroll for cover crop cost-share is August 15th for any non-winter-hardy crops such as radishes and oats, and September 15th is the deadline to qualify for cost-share funding for cover crops that are winter-hardy, such as winter wheat, rye, or winter peas.