Nebraska farmers can learn more about farm bill programs available to them during a series of meetings held across the state over the next two months.

Nebraska Extension and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency in Nebraska will host a series of education meetings to assist producers as they begin to make decisions on farm bill programs.

The 2018 farm bill, signed into law last Dec., reauthorized the existing Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) safety net programs that were in the 2014 farm bill, however producers will need to make new program enrollment decisions over the coming months.

While the ARC and PLC programs under the new farm bill remain very similar to the previous farm bill, a few program changes coupled with changes in market conditions and outlook could significantly impact producer decisions.

“These meetings will help producers understand the programs and recent changes, as well as the decisions to be made at sign-up now and in the coming years,” said Nancy Johner, executive director for the Farm Service Agency in Nebraska. “There are some changes, such as an optional PLC program yield update, and other tweaks to the ARC and PLC programs that producers should consider as they make their selections.”

“Producers face a familiar choice between ARC and PLC, but under very different circumstances now as compared to 2014,” said Brad Lubben, policy specialist with Nebraska Extension. “Understanding the program mechanics, analysis and available decision tools will help producers make sound enrollment decisions with FSA.”

The joint Nebraska Extension and Nebraska Farm Service Agency producer education meetings are scheduled at 28 locations across the state from late Nov. to mid-Dec. in advance of the coming ARC/PLC enrollment deadlines in early 2020. The tentative schedule is as follows:

Panhandle/North Central Region:

Ainsworth – Ainsworth Lutheran Church – Dec. 16, 2-5 p.m.

Bridgeport - Prairie Winds Community Center - Nov. 22, 2-5 p.m.

Chadron - Chadron State College – Dec. 17, 1:30-4:30 p.m.

Ogallala - Keith County Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall - Dec. 12, 1-4 p.m.

Valentine - Mid Plains Community College - Dec. 16, 9 a.m. to noon

Southwest/Central Region:

Broken Bow - Custer County Fairgrounds - Dec. 16, 1-4 p.m.

Imperial - Chase County Fairgrounds 4-H Building - Nov. 26, 1:30-4:30 p.m.

Kearney - Buffalo County Fairgrounds Antelope Meeting Room - Dec. 17, 1-p.m.

Lexington - Dawson County Fairgrounds Extension Meeting Room - Dec. 2, 1-4 p.m.

McCook - Red Willow County Fairgrounds Community Building - Dec. 3, 1:30-4:30 p.m.

North Platte - UNL West Central Research and Extension Center - Dec. 18, 1:30-4:30 p.m.

Ord - Valley County Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall - Dec. 4, 1-4 p.m.

Northeastern Region:

Bloomfield - Community Center - Dec. 2, 1:30-4:30p.m.

Columbus - Ag Park - Dec. 4, 9 a.m. to noon

O’Neill - Community Center - Dec. 3, 9 AM-12 NOON

Norfolk - Northeast Community College Lifelong Learning Center - Dec. 18, 1-4 p.m.

Wayne - Wayne Fire Hall - Dec. 16, (2 meetings) 1-4 P.M. or 6-9 p.m.

West Point - Nielsen Center - Dec. 9, 9 a.m. to noon

East Central Region:

Grand Island - College Park Fonner Park Room - Dec. 5, 1-4 p.m.

Mead – UNL Eastern Nebraska Research and Extension Center - Dec. 3, 9 AM-12 NOON

Scribner - Dodge County Fairgrounds Mohr Auditorium - Dec. 11, 9 a.m. to noon

York - York County Fairgrounds Cornerstone Building - Dec. 6, 9 a.m. to noon

Southeastern Region:

Beatrice - Gage County Fairgrounds 4-H Building – Dec. 17, 9 a.m. to noon

Bruning - Bruning Opera House - Dec. 5, 1:30-4:30 p.m.

Humboldt - Ag Building – Dec. 12, 9 a.m. to noon

*Lincoln - Lancaster County Extension Center - Dec. 16, 9 a.m. to noon

Red Cloud - Community Center - Nov. 25, 1-4 p.m.

Weeping Water - Cass County Fairgrounds - Dec. 3, 9 a.m. to noon

The meetings are all free and open to the public. Advance registration is encouraged for planning purposes for materials and facilities. Attendees can register for any of the meetings on the web at farmbill.unl.edu or by calling or visiting their county FSA or Extension office.

The educational programs are each set to run three hours, featuring information and insight from FSA specialists and Extension experts, as well as other relevant information from local agencies.

Please check the website for updates on locations, dates and times. Several additional meetings also are being planned.

There also are resources available online that can educate producers in their ARC/PLC decision-making process. Links to these resources are available from FSA at www.fsa.usda.gov/ne under the Spotlights section or from Extension at farmbill.unl.edu.

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