Enrollment Now Open For Cotton Transition Assistance

JONESBORO, ARK.
   Cotton producers have until Oct. 7 to enroll in the Cotton Transition Assistance Program, a bridge to the changes that will take place in the 2015 growing season under the 2014 Farm Bill.
   The enrollment period opened Aug. 11.
   “This program provides interim payments to cotton producers during the 2014 crop year until the Stacked Income Protection Plan, or STAX, becomes available in the 2015 crop year,” said Scott Stiles, extension economist for the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.
   The Cotton Transition Assistance Program will provide a payment equivalent to 5.4 cents per pound on a farm’s 2013 cotton base acres and Direct Program payment yield.
   Payment limitations do apply to CTAP. Payments for 2014 and 2015 will be limited to $40,000 per person or entity. Also, persons or legal entities with an average adjusted gross income exceeding $900,000 will not be eligible for CTAP. Tax years 2010, 2011 and 2012 will be used to calculate adjusted gross income.
   Cotton producers are encouraged to schedule an appointment with their local Farm Service Agency office early in this enrollment period.
   CTAP applications approved before Oct. 1 are subject to a congressionally mandated automatic reduction of 7.2 percent for the 2014 crop year.  Applications approved after Oct. 1 will be reduced by the required 7.3 percent for the 2015 crop year.
   The reductions are required by the provisions of the Budget Control Act of 2011, which requires USDA to cut down certain payments under a process known as sequestration.
   For more information about CTAP, visit a local FSA office or go online to www.fsa.usda.gov. ∆
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