Friday, April 27, 2018

Applications For REAP Farm Conservation Tax Credits Due June 30, At The Latest

The Department of Agriculture Thursday reminded farmers the deadline to apply for the Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP) farm conservation tax credit program is June 30.  It is recommended producers apply by June 1 for this first-come, first-served program.
The tax credits can help those in production agriculture offset the costs of implementing best management practices (BMPs), like planting forested stream buffers or purchasing on-farm conservation equipment.
“Agriculture producers are facing tremendous market volatility and uncertainty today. At the same time, our farmers want to be good stewards of our natural resources, and they’re being called on to help restore and protect the quality of our waterways,” said Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding. “REAP is a way for farmers to make upgrades and improvements that increase their farm’s bottom lines and clean up our waterways at the same time. If you’re an agricultural producer thinking about purchasing new equipment or implementing a BMP and you want to take advantage of REAP, now is the time to act..”
REAP is a Pennsylvania tax credit program for agricultural producers who install BMPs or make equipment purchases that reduce nutrient and sediment runoff, which improves Pennsylvania’s streams and watersheds.
The program is administered by State Conservation Commission, which provides support and oversight to the state's 66 county conservation districts.
Farmers may receive tax credits of up to $150,000 per agricultural operation for 50 to 75 percent of the project’s cost.
The most commonly approved projects are for no-till planting and precision ag equipment, waste storage facilities, conservation plans, nutrient management plans, and protecting barnyards and other areas with animals.
Cover crops and riparian stream buffers are also popular REAP-eligible practices.
REAP can be used in conjunction with other funding sources, such as the Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP) or the Chesapeake Bay Program to help install BMPs.
For projects that include the proposed purchase of equipment, the equipment must be delivered by June 30, 2018.
For projects involving the implementation of structural BMPs, all BMPs and BMP components must be complete by June 30, 2019 to be eligible.
REAP applications are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis, up to the June 1 deadline for this year’s funds.
The longer producers wait, the less chance they have of securing funding from this year’s allocation, Redding added.
“Gov. Wolf and the General Assembly have made a commitment to continue funding the REAP program in this year’s budget,” Redding noted. “They see its value for our farms and waterways, and hear firsthand from farmers who have benefited from the program. I thank everyone who has a hand in this program’s success.”
Private investors may act as project sponsors by providing capital in exchange for tax credits. Any individual or business subject to taxation through personal income tax, corporate net income tax, the bank shares tax or others is eligible to participate in REAP.
Since the program began in 2007, REAP has awarded tax credits to more than 4,800 projects totaling more than $68 million. Public and private investments in REAP have contributed to the conservation projects, worth more than $165 million.
The 2017-18 REAP application packet, as well as other information about REAP, is available on Agriculture’s Resource Enhancement and Protection webpage or by contacting Joel Semke at 717-705-4032 or
Learn more about Chesapeake Bay-related initiatives by visiting DEP’s Pennsylvania’s Chesapeake Bay Plan webpage.
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