The 2017 sign-up period is open for statewide water quality and conservation cost-share funds through the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship. The program helps offset some of the cost for farmers' additional practices to their operation. Practices eligible for this funding are cover crops, no-till or strip till, or using a nitrification inhibitor when applying fertilizer.

"Iowa farmers are continuing to take on the challenge of improving water quality, and this program has played an important role in helping farmers get started with a new practice on their farm focused on protecting water quality," said Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey.

Farmers are still encouraged to visit their local Soil and Water Conservation District office to inquire about cost-share funding.