This blog is for Polk County Florida small farms and pesticide applicators as a method of communication and sharing information. This blog is administered by the University of Florida IFAS Extension Polk County Extension Agent, Mary Beth Henry.
Saturday, March 5, 2016
Florida Land Steward Update 3/4/16
Florida Land Steward Update March 4, 2016
Have Land? Get a Plan and Stay Connected. Florida Land Steward is your source of assistance, information, events and resources.
News, information and upcoming events below. Please share this update with your neighbors, colleagues and others that may be interested.
FEDERAL TAX INCENTIVES FOR CONSERVATION EASEMENTS MADE PERMANENT Enhanced Federal tax incentives for conservation easement donations are now permanent:
·Raises the deduction a donor can take for donating a conservation easement from 30 percent of his or her income in any year to 50 percent;
·Allows qualifying farmers and ranchers to deduct up to 100 percent of their income; and
·Extends the carry-forward period for a donor to take tax deductions for a voluntary conservation agreement from 5 to 15 years.
These private, voluntary agreements with land trusts or agencies permanently limit use of the land in order to protect its conservation value. Lands placed into conservation easements can continue to be timbered, farmed, hunted and managed based on the objectives of the landowner.
For more information about conservation easements, see our UF/IFAS Extension publication about them at https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/fr149. For more about the incentive download the Land Trust Alliance's printer-friendly brochure (Using The Conservation Tax Incentive) for landowners, including frequently asked questions. Also, read a memo from the Internal Revenue Service (Internal Revenue Bulletin) offering guidance regarding deductions by individuals for qualified conservation contributions.
FUNDING HELPS AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS IMPROVE WORKING LANDS Application Deadline March 31 for Conservation Stewardship Program Agricultural producers can sign up for funding available through the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), a conservation program that helps improve the health and productivity of private and tribal working lands. USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) plans to add an estimated 10 million acres to the rolls of CSP during fiscal 2016.
NRCS accepts applications for CSP throughout the year, but producers should submit applications by March 31 to USDA service centers to be considered for enrollment in 2016. Participants with existing CSP contracts that will expire on Dec.31, 2016, have the option to renew their contracts for an additional five years if they agree to adopt additional activities to achieve higher levels of conservation on their lands. Applications to renew are also due by March 31. In Florida, producers can participate through CSP in the regional landscape-level Longleaf Pine Initiative. Funding is available for many types of enhancements to help participants:
·Improve soil quality through use of cover crops, conservation crop rotations and other activities that increase soil productivity.
·Use water wisely and improve water quality through enhancements such as more efficient irrigation systems and weather monitoring.
·Restore habitat for wildlife and pollinators such as the greater sage-grouse, lesser prairie-chicken and monarch butterfly through the use of better grazing systems and improved plant management.
TAX TIPS FOR FOREST LANDOWNERS FOR THE 2015 TAX YEAR UPDATED Federal income tax laws can influence a private woodland owner's financial decisions about land management. Yet, special favorable tax provisions on timber that are intended to encourage private forest management and stewardship are commonly unknown. To help woodland owners in filing their 2015 tax returns, this publication, by Dr. Linda Wang, USDA Forest Service National Timber Tax Specialist, explains the federal income tax laws on timber. The information is not legal or accounting advice. This has been updated and includes recent tax law changes. This publication and other related resources are available at http://www.timbertax.org.
FOREST STEWARDSHIP VIDEOS - VIEW AND SHARE! Enjoy and share these videos about a variety of stewardship topics: the Forest Stewardship Program, forests and water, thinning your pine stand, invasive species, greenbelt property tax assessment. All these videos are on the Florida Forest Stewardship Program home page – check them out: http://sfrc.ufl.edu/forest_stewardship
SOMETHING BUGGING YOUR TREES? Do you have pests or a disease in your trees? Leaves or needles wilting, and you don't know why? Sawdust falling out of your trees, and you don't know how to save them? There is help: ask your question at the free Forest Health Diagnostic Forum: http://sfrc.ufl.edu/treehealth/forum/.
GOT AN INVASIVE SPECIES PROBLEM? Go to floridainvasives.org for information, assistance and partnership opportunities.
LOOKING FOR INFORMATION ON A PARTICULAR TOPIC? Check the vast array of extension publications available at the University of Florida IFAS on the EDIS publication site: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ Wow, there's a publication about that?
HAVE AN EVENT OR RELATED NEWS TO SHARE? Drop a line to Chris Demers, firstname.lastname@example.org
Florida Forest Service Landowner Workshop, Madison County, 9 am, UF/IFAS Madison County Extension Office, 184 College Loop, Madison, FL 32340. Meet the Madison County Forester and ask questions about timber management, prescribed burning, wildlife considerations, potential cost-share opportunities, or anything else regarding your woodland management objectives. Reserve a space by calling the Madison County Extension Office at (850) 973-4138, or Reaette Langford, Florida Forest Service, at (850) 973-5100.
Urban Landscape Summit (link), UF/IFAS Straughn Extension Professional Development Center, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. Provided by the UF Center for Landscape Conservation and Ecology, the event will feature presentations of applied research or extension projects pertaining to urban landscape issues in Florida. Topics include, but are not limited to, water, landscape management, urban pest issues, social issues, economics, and more. See link for details and registration
Private Applicator Pest Control Workshop, 8:30 am to 4:00 pm ET, UF/IFAS Clay County Extension Office, Green Cove Springs, FL. A total of 6 CEUs (3 CORE + 3 Private Applicator) have been requested for this program. $20 fee, registration by cash or check only. For registration, contact the Clay County Extension Service at (904) 284-6355.Register by March 25.
Florida State Technical Advisory Committee Meeting, 10 am - 2 pm ET, Doyle Conner Building, 1911 SW 34th St, Gainesville, FL. Public, ag producers, natural resource interest groups invited. Hosted by USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service. Contact: Jeff Woods, (352) 338-9515.
2016 Aquatic Weed Control Short Course, Coral Springs, FL. Join us for the largest and most inclusive training for Florida Pesticide Licensing and CEUs. Become a more qualified professional, engage with your industry, and network with your peers! See link above for details and registration.
Quail Management Workshop (link), 8 am to 3 pm CT, Gum Creek Lodge, Okaloosa County. Provided by Florida Forest Service, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Yellow River Conservation District. See flier linked above for details. Lunch will be provided. Pre-register by March 25, 2016 by contacting Billie Clayton at (850) 767‐3634.
5th Annual Beekeeping in the Panhandle Trade Show and Workshop, 9 am. to 2 pm at the Washington County Extension Office, Chipley. Contact the Jackson County Extension Office at (850) 482-9620 for details.