Iowa NRCS is allowing automatic one-year conservation compliance waivers for ephemeral gully erosion for producers in the 56 counties (so far) that have received presidential disaster declarations.

“Conducting reviews in these counties would likely result in the need for granting a variance due to severe or unusual weather events (Title 7 CFR Part 12 Section 12.5(a)(6))," says Iowa NRCS State Conservationist Kurt Simon. "Waivers for the disaster affected counties will allow USDA program participants needed time to recover from the impacts of the unusual weather events. However, producers are expected to follow their conservation systems as closely as possible. Tillage should only be applied as necessary to address ephemeral gullies resulting from flooding.”

The following guidance to county NRCS staff is only for those tracts that are physically located in counties related to this waiver:

For all random tracts and employee tracts on the compliance review list for 2019:

  • Do not take any action in the FSA compliance review database.

For all tracts that received a variance in 2018 (carryovers):

  • Do not conduct a follow up review in 2019.  Enter the same variance code into the database that was entered in 2018.
    • These tracts will be added to the 2020 list for a follow up review.

For all tracts labeled "NA" (not applying) from the 2018 review:

  • Conduct the reviews, as this is their opportunity to regain eligibility.
    • A variance may apply to these tracts.

For all tracts added due to reports of potential violation ("whistle-blower")

  • Conduct the reviews.
  • A variance may apply to these tracts.

Producers with questions should contact their county NRCS office.