Nevada Department of Agriculture Announces New Director

We are excited to announce the Nevada Department of Agriculture (NDA) announced Jennifer Ott as the new director taking effect on March 4th.

Ott has served as the Plant Industry division administrator at the NDA since January of 2018. Prior to being the plant industry administrator at the NDA she was the operations director for the Desert Farming Initiative at the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR). In addition to her service at UNR, Ott was a consultant with the Nevada Small Business Development Center and began her career in a laboratory setting, first as a chemist and later as a director.

“The Nevada Farm Bureau looks forward to working with Ott and we congratulator her on her hard work and new achievement,” Said Bevan Lister Nevada Farm Bureau President.


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State veterinarian urges horse owners to travel with caution

Two cases of equine infection known as “strangles” reported in Clark County

After two positive confirmations of streptococcus equi bacterial infection (commonly known as strangles or equine distemper) and several more likely positives on one property in Clark County, Dr. JJ Goicoechea, state veterinarian for the Nevada Department of Agriculture (NDA), stresses the importance of best biosecurity practices to minimize the risk of spreading disease.

 “To date, only one facility is affected, and I have recommended a 21-day hold – no horses in or out of that facility, beginning Feb. 20, to slow the spread of disease,” Dr. Goicoechea said.

 Per Nevada Revised Statute (NRS) Chapter 571.160, details regarding animal disease reports must be kept confidential unless there is a public health risk. Because strangles cannot be transferred from horses to humans, there is no such risk at this time.

 “It is not uncommon to see cases of upper respiratory diseases in horses this time of year, and we notify local veterinarians and associations when we have new cases,” Dr. Goicoechea said. “We haven’t issued any quarantine orders, but our primary focus is stopping the spread of disease, especially as we approach horse show and event season in the west.”

 Biosecurity means doing everything possible to reduce chances of an infectious disease being transferred by people, animals, equipment or vehicles. The bacteria that causes strangles is easily transferred on boots, coats, gloves and equipment. Some basic practices include:

  1. Never share equipment between horses, and always wear clean clothes when going from ill horses to others. 
  2. Always start chores at healthy horses, and end with sick or recovering (within 30 days) horses.
  3. Avoid common areas such as hitching rails, wash racks, etc. during an outbreak.

“Please monitor your horses for symptoms including a cough or runny nose and consult with your veterinarian to ensure vaccinations are current,” Dr. Goicoechea said. “If you suspect your horse may be exhibiting signs of illness, contact your veterinarian and do not allow contact with other horses.”

Per NRS Chapter 571.160, any animal owner or practicing veterinarian who has knowledge of a confirmed case of a reportable disease, shall immediately notify the NDA Animal Disease Laboratory. A list of reportable diseases can be found

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Mormon cricket populations continue to rise

NDA to host open meetings Feb. 20-22 to discuss Mormon cricket and grasshopper infestation control throughout Nevada

The Nevada Department of Agriculture (NDA), in cooperation withUnited States Department of Agriculture Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ)program, will conduct a series of public meetings to discuss proposed Mormon cricket and grasshopper population management.

“Mormon cricket and grasshopper populations have been on the rise for the last couple of years,” Jeff Knight, state entomologist for the NDA, said. “Significant numbers were found north of Reno in the Red Rock area, south of Winnemucca, near Paradise Valley and in and around Austin last year.”

The NDA and PPQ will treat areas with the goal of protecting crops and public safety. Meetings will be held throughout the state to discuss possible management strategies and products used for control. Citizen roles and how to report and manage infestations on private property will also be discussed.

The meetings will take place at the following times and locations:






Feb. 20, 2019

3:00 p.m.

Nevada Department of Agriculture

405 S. 21st Street

Sparks, NV 89431


Feb. 21, 2019

9:00 a.m.

Humboldt County Cooperative Extension

1082 Fairgrounds Road

Winnemucca, NV 89445


Feb. 21, 2019

1:00 p.m.

Lander County Cooperative Extension

815 N. 2nd Street

Battle Mountain, NV 89820


Feb. 21, 2019

4:00 p.m.

Nevada Department of Agriculture

4780 E. Idaho Street

Elko, NV 89801


Feb. 22, 2019

10:00 a.m.

Eureka Natural Resource Center

10 N. Monroe Street

Eureka, NV 89316


Feb. 22, 2019

1:00 p.m.

Austin Ranger District Office

100 Midas Canyon Road

Austin, NV 89310



For more information, view the agenda or contact Jeff Knight at (775) 353-3767 or

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Grassroots Newsletter 2/15

Newsletter for February 15, 2019


New Water Bill Introduced And Warrants Watching

Another new water bill has been introduced, this offered in the Nevada Senate by the Committee on Natural Resources, where the bill has been referred. SB 140 is aimed at providing a 10 percent safety buffer for those groundwater basins which haven’t been fully appropriated. The reserved amount of water would be eligible for the State Engineer to allow temporary use of water if the basin would be covered by a declaration of drought by the Governor or the U.S. Secretary of the Department of Agriculture. If the basin were to be designated as a declared drought by the President of the U.S., the same type of treatment would be authorized.

At this writing, no hearing has been scheduled for further action on the bill.



Nevada Farm Bureau Action Request Sent To Members Regarding SB 132

Nevada Farm Bureau has made a request to Farm Bureau members to contact members of the Nevada Senate’s Education Committee, supporting SB 132, written to limit the uses of revenue generated from agricultural lands that were donated for the purpose of benefitting the University College of Reno, College of Agriculture.Clicking on this link will take you to the Nevada Farm Bureau legislative action portal to help you make the contacts in support of SB 132.

SB 132 is offered by Senator Pete Goicoechea of Eureka County and Senator James Settelmeyer of Douglas County. This bill requires the Board of Regents to use the proceeds and rents from the sale or lease of, or any property received in exchange for, property that is dedicated exclusively for use by the Max C. Fleischmann College of Agriculture, University of Nevada, Reno, to support, expand and develop programs relating to agriculture at the University or another institution within the System.




Nevada Farm Bureau Joins Groups In Letter Of Support For Wildlife Damage

A number of groups, including Nevada Farm Bureau, are sending a letter to U.S. House and Senate Appropriations and Subcommittee Chairs/Ranking Members, seeking continued support of Wildlife Services at the national level. The letter, authored by the American Sheep Industry Association, calls attention to the fact that wildlife cause more than $12.8 billion in damage each year to natural resources, public infrastructure, private property and agriculture.This link will take you to the American Sheep Industry Association webpage to learn more details.

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Newsletter for February 8, 2019

Newsletter for February 8, 2019

Sorry That We Missed Last Week’s Newsletter…

We are sorry that last week’s schedule of activities worked against the ability to get a newsletter written. While we were “away” we were tied up with the 2019 Nevada Water Resources Association conference. Along with brushing up on Nevada water law, we had the opportunity to interact with those interested in several critical issues. We also had the chance to hear from the newly appointed Acting State Engineer, Tim Wilson and also the Director for the Nevada Department of Conservation, Bradley Crowell.

Heading into the 2018 Nevada Legislature, water will be one of the most important subjects we will be dealing with and protecting the foundation of Nevada water law (prior appropriation) will be one of the biggest challenges…


80th Nevada Legislature Begins With More Than A Flurry…

The legislative process itself got off to a rather slow start, with the second day of the session even getting a 2-hour delay, because of Mother Nature’s activity. Things will likely be picking up as the first week wraps up and committee’s get through the normal introductions and formal start up reports/process.

Thursday, February 7, the Department of Agriculture presented their budget proposals to a joint subcommittee of the Assembly/Senate money committees for the coming biennium. The budget discussions are at the beginning of the process with a long way to go in fashioning what will evolve going forward.





Thanks To Congressman Amodei For Hosting Important Face To Face Meeting With Livestock Permit Owners and U.S. Navy

Nevada Farm Bureau was provided with the opportunity to participate in a meeting hosted by Nevada Congressman Mark Amodei in Fallon, February 4. Congressman Amodei invited the grazing permit owners who will be impacted by the proposed expansion of the U.S. Navy’s training facilities to meet with representatives of the Navy’s project and the Bureau of Land Management officials who will be involved in the proposed land withdrawal.

The newly named director for the Nevada State BLM, Jon Raby also was part of the meeting…the first day of being on duty in his new role as State Director. 

Public comments for the proposed land withdrawal are due on February 14.Nevada Farm Bureau’s Draft Comments.

This link provides the portal for sharing your public input.






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School Teaches Stockmanship with a Light Touch on the Land

By Hannah Nikonow, Intermountain West Joint Venture


We don’t always give cattle the credit they deserve. They are quite trainable animals and there’s a school where people can learn how to implement practices that take advantage of the predictable behavior of cattle.


The Nevada Stockmanship School is an annual event that teaches livestock and rangeland managers the fundamentals of enhancing and protecting rangelands by managing cattle with a gentle touch and herd behavior training. Riders attending this school learn how to place and effectively move cattle where they are wanted, for specific periods of time, providing the positive environmental outcomes of specific targeted grazing and targeted rest. Stockmanship is recognized a useful management tool applicable across western rangelands.


“An animal has a tenancy to stay where it’s more comfortable,” said Duane Coombs, Outcome-based Grazing Program Coordinator partnered with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). “In the past, we’ve harassed cows out of where we don’t want them to be. But if they were happy there, they will want to go back.” Using stockmanship creates a sense of comfort for the herd that allows cattle to be happy in places useful for managing land.


Livestock might be accustomed to living in those riparian or wet meadow places, but riders can work to change their behavior to get them to use other portions of the range that are normally underused. This is better for the range and better for the cows.


“You can build a work ethic into the cows,” Coombs said. “Just like people, if they get what they want all the time, they might get lazy. But you convince them they can take a little walk from home every once in a while to go down and drink from some of these sensitive areas and then go back into the uplands for the majority of their day, it’s good for everyone.”


In addition to protecting critical areas like sage grouse leks, elk calving areas, fish spawning and riparian areas, implementing low-stress livestock handling principles and techniques can be good for a rancher’s bottom line. By decreasing herd stress, this can lower health costs, such as the likelihood of ingestion of poisonous plants, increase weight gains, reduce or eliminate weight loss in calves at weaning, and increase grazing capacity though better utilization of hard-to-get-to areas. Stockmanship can also be used specifically for targeted grazing to reduce the fire fuel load on the range.


“One of the ultimate goals of stockmanship is to have fenceless control over where cattle graze, such as placing herds in the uplands, so cattle stay where they are until they are intentionally moved again,” said Dave Voth, Rangeland Health Program Coordinator for the Nevada Department of Agriculture (NDA). “This approach to stockmanship can have a positive benefit to rangeland health, as well as the economic side of grazing.”


With this increased livestock management effectiveness, the costs of ranch labor can be decreased due to fewer people being needed to move livestock. Another benefit to using these principles and practices taught at the Stockmanship School is that they can be employed within any existing grazing management systems. Although adequate water is essential, stockmanship can be used with or without additional range improvements. As

such, a lengthy public lands management process is not required to implement stockmanship on public rangelands.


Zak Morgan is the Cow Boss at the Roaring Springs Ranch in Oregon and he attended the 2018 Stockmanship School.


“I always thought there was just one way to work with cow,” Morgan said. “And that was you just made them do what you wanted. But when I left that school, I was a different believer.”


After attending the 2018 school, Morgan said he played with it a little on the ranch’s private lands to see if he could make it work back home.


“I’ve spent some time placing cows using the methods taught at the school, making sure they were happy and they could walk down to that riparian area, get a drink and they would head back up to where we put them,” Morgan said. “It worked great.”


At the Roaring Springs Ranch, Morgan runs cows alongside sage grouse, redband trout, feral horses, and a newly established population of elk. Managing forage for all these species can be a unique challenge, but he said the style of stockmanship works well for all the competing needs of these animals.


“It kind of sounds like voodoo magic but it’s really incredible to see it work and that’s what I want to bring this school here in 2019,” Morgan said.


June 11 – 14, 2019, the Stockmanship School will be hosted on the Roaring Springs Ranch in Oregon, and Morgan said the ranch’s landscape will provide fresh cows of different breeds, all sorts of different terrain, and all the possible scenarios to test and challenge these stockmanship methods.


Nevada’s Cottonwood Stockmanship School is made possible thanks to support from the National Riparian Service Team, BLM, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, NDA, the Nevada Association of Conservation Districts, Cottonwood Ranch, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The third annual Cottonwood Stockmanship School will be held in October.


For more information about the upcoming Stockmanship Schools in Nevada and Oregon, please contact Dave Voth at or (775) 738-8076.

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Newsletter For Jan. 25, 2019

Nevada Farm Bureau Newsletter For Jan. 25, 2019


 Farm Bureau Economist Offer Their Crystal Ball Outlook Summary For 2019

During the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) 100th year annual meeting an information conference featuring the organization’s economic team offered their perspective on the developments taking shape. This link provides that overview. Their report covered the full scope of agricultural economic details, putting trade and tariffs into the context of their outlook for major commodity sectors.






Congressman Amodei Receives Friend Of Farm Bureau Award

Nevada’s 2nd District Congressman Mark Amodei recently received the “Friend of Farm Bureau” Award for the 115 Session of Congress. The award is presented on the basis of support of favorable votes on legislation in the two years of the Congressional Session. The procedure for consideration is based on notifying members of Congress through a letter regarding the position that Farm Bureau has taken on a bill that will be coming up for a vote. Congressman Amodei’s voting aligned with Farm Bureau’s positions over 90 percent of the time on the key votes. This isn’t the first time Congressman Amodei has been awarded this recognition. He also earned the award in each of the sessions he has served in Congress (112, 113 and 114 sessions).





Quest Commentary On Southern Nevada Water Pipeline

Kyle Roerink, Executive Director for the Great Basin Water Network, recently wrote and shared this commentary article, which has also been published in the Review Journal. Nevada Farm Bureau is a member of the Great Basin Water Network and is involved with the on-going process of protecting rural water interests from major water resources being transferred to the Las Vegas Valley. His article is entitled… “Governor Steve Sisolak has an opportunity on state water policy”

The 2018 election cycle was unlike any other for water politics in Nevada.

The top candidates for governor wisely denounced the Southern Nevada Water Authority’s plan to build a 300-mile, $15.5 billion pipeline to siphon 58 billion gallons of water annually from the heart of the Great Basin in rural eastern Nevada to Las Vegas.

The announcements — from Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak and his opponent, Republican Adam Laxalt — signified a watershed moment in Nevada politics. Opposition to the pipeline project, which at one time had the unquestioning support of the state’s political elites, was the go-to choice on the gubernatorial campaign trail in this election cycle.

The election may be over, but the battle over the pipeline continues, as our drought-stricken aquifers and reservoirs shrink. Sisolak, who served on the water authority board during his time as a Clark County commissioner, is no stranger to the acrimony associated with Nevada water law.

Historically speaking, Sisolak’s opposition to the pipeline puts him in good company. The late Gov. Mike O’Callaghan, who was out of office when the authority first started implementing its plans for an eastern Nevada water grab, used his bully pulpit as the executive editor of the Las Vegas Sun to condemn the project in 1989 and then again shortly before he died in 2004.

Seven years later, the Bureau of Land Management concluded that the pipeline would destroy 305 springs, 112 miles of streams, 8,000 acres of wetlands and 191,000 acres of shrubland habitat. The implications of that study are damning. Great Basin National Park, as well as multiple national forest lands, national wildlife refuges and sacred indigenous cultural sites in the region, would be seriously harmed. At least 20 threatened or endangered species would be imperiled. Businesses — from ranchers and farmers to restaurant owners and recreational outfitters — would be jeopardized.

We know something must be done. Climate change has shrunk the Colorado River’s flow by 15 percent during the past 100 years. Nearly one-third of Nevada’s 256 groundwater basins have more appropriated rights to water than water that is actually available. Our state’s population and business community — with their inherent thirst for water — continue to increase.

But with great controversy comes great opportunity. As governor, Sisolak can ensure the pipeline is recognized once and for all as the mirage it always has been and that the Southern Nevada Water Authority shifts its efforts to truly viable and sustainable projects.

For starters, the governor recently selected Tim Wilson as a temporary replacement for the state’s top water regulator, retiring State Engineer Jason King. As Sisolak searches for a long-term regulator, he must keep this in mind: The new state engineer will make decisions on the pipeline and other issues that will have long-lasting effects. All candidates for the position must be willing to deny the authority water rights applications for the pipeline project because they would harm senior rights holders and cause grave damage to the environment in violation of Nevada law.

Next, the governor must be ready to oppose and potentially veto any legislation that would fundamentally alter sound, long-standing bedrock principles of Nevada water law and facilitate the pipeline along with other unsustainable water grabs. Assembly Bill 30, which would encourage and continue irresponsible over-appropriation of water, is a bill that must go by the wayside this upcoming session in order to protect the tenets of Nevada water law that have served this state for more than a century.

Lastly, Sisolak must continue to advocate for desalination. Whether he calls upon the Legislature or orders his administration to take action, the state must investigate the potential for collaborative, solar-powered desalination projects with California and Mexico to reduce the burden on the Colorado River and provide additional water for Southern Nevada.

Prudent, holistic and sustainable water resource management will uphold our principles and protect the rights of current and future residents. In this case, it also would ensure that an incoming governor keeps his campaign promise.


Farm Bureau Supported Tax Legislation For Health Insurance Is Introduced In U.S. Senate

Two bills to deal with the Health Insurance Tax have been introduced in the U.S. Senate. S. 80, a bipartisan proposal, calls for the permanent repeal of the HIT Tax and is sponsored by Senators John Barrasso of Wyoming, Krysten Sinema of Arizona and Cory Gardner of Colorado.

S. 172 is also a bipartisan proposal and seeks to extend the current exemption to fiscal years 2020 and 202. This bill is introduced with the sponsorship of Senators Cory Gardner of Colorado, Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire, John Barrasso of Wyoming, Doug Jones of Alabama, Tim Scott of South Carolina and Krysten Sinema of Arizona

Most farmers and ranchers and other small businesses cannot self-insure because they do not have a large enough pool of employees. Instead, they purchase health insurance for themselves, their families and their employees on the fully insured market. The Health Insurance Tax (HIT), enacted as part of the Affordable Care, is levied on health insurance companies who operate in the fully insured marketplace and is directly passed on to individuals and small businesses who purchase their own insurance.

The current moratorium covers the collection of the HIT Tax during 2019 but the HIT will collectively add an estimated $16 billion to the cost of coverage for individuals, small businesses, families and Medicare Advantage seniors in 2020. This works out to an average $500 in added health insurance premiums per family.

A copy of the letter of support for S. 80, by American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) President Zippy Duvall is attached here and might provide you with a start for your own communication with Nevada’s two Senators, seeking them to sign on as co-sponsors. This link will provide you with the portal for communicating with Senator Catherine Cortez Masto and this link will provide you with the opportunity to email Dara Cohen, Senator Jacky Rosen’s chief of staff. The current email system for Senator Rosen has not been put in place at this writing.


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Celebrating 100 Years

The American Farm Bureau Federation celebrated their 100thAnnual Meeting in New Orleans on January 11ththrough the 16th.  The centennial celebration was one for the books, which included educational workshops, policy discussions, Tradeshow, Young Farmers and Ranchers Discussion Meet and the President of the United States speaking for the second year in a row.

Each year the AFBF Annual meeting is a time for Farm Bureau members from every state to come together.

At each convention the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) provides attendees with a variety of educational workshops that are of interest to all attendees. This year attendees were able to choose from workshops that included: Ag literacy toolbox, commodity market directions, evaluating farm policy and financial risk, recruiting farm bureau members and volunteers, the future of Ag innovation and many more.

Policy development is equally as important for Nevada Farm Bureau as it is for AFBF. Delegates from each state are selected to participate in the policy development discussions, which form the American Farm Bureau policy book. Nevada Farm Bureau President Bevan Lister and Vice President Darrell Pursel participated in the policy development process. The 2019 policy book for both the American Farm Bureau and Nevada Farm Bureau can both be found by visiting www.nvfb/org/policy

Each year Young Farmers and Ranchers (YF&R) holds the national discussion meet at the AFBF Annual Meeting. Participants who won their states YF&R discussion meet our eligible to compete.

“The discussion meet was a great learning experience and an excellent opportunity to meet Farm Bureau members from other states,” said Blane Merkley. “It was an experience I will never forget.”

Blane Merkley was the winner of the Nevada Farm Bureau discussion meet and also competed in New Orleans. Unfortunately, Blane was unable to advance in the competition, but showed great knowledge and talent as he competed. It was a tough competition and we are proud of all Blane was able to accomplish.

Another great highlight from this year’s convention was President Donald Trump speaking at the closing session for the second year in a row. At the 99thAnnual American Farm Bureau meeting President Trump made a promise to return for the 100thyear celebration.

The United States Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue opened for the President. Trump’s speech included agriculture highlights over the last year including virtually eliminating the Death Tax, the Farm Bill, an update on trade and boarder security.  

The Farm Bill delivers for our farmers on a wide range of key priorities.  On critical farm programs, such as crop insurance, you will have the support you need to plan for the future.  It increases the amount farmers can borrow so you can expand and improve your businesses. It also secures the $600 million commitment we made to build a modern, effective, rural broadband across America’s heartland.  You’re not well serviced.  (Applause.)  That’s something the great, great middle part of our country has been complaining about for a long time.  You’re not properly serviced.  You will be now.  You will be now.  That bill is a great bill for the farmer. President Donald Trump

 I was an honor to have the President speak for the second year in a row and was a great way to end the 100thAmerican Farm Bureau Annual Meeting.

We look forward to Nevada Farm Bureau’s 100-year celebration and we hope you all join us for this special event later this year.

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USDA to Reopen FSA Offices for Additional Services During Government Shutdown

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced that all Farm Service Agency (FSA) offices nationwide will soon reopen to provide additional administrative services to farmers and ranchers during the lapse in federal funding.  Certain FSA offices have been providing limited services for existing loans and tax documents since January 17, and will continue to do so through January 23.  Beginning January 24, however, all FSA offices will open and offer a longer list of transactions they will accommodate.  

Additionally, Secretary Perdue announced that the deadline to apply for the Market Facilitation Program, which aids farmers harmed by unjustified retaliatory tariffs, has been extended to February 14.  The original deadline had been January 15.  Other program deadlines may be modified and will be announced as they are addressed.

“At President Trump’s direction, we have been working to alleviate the effects of the lapse in federal funding as best we can, and we are happy to announce the reopening of FSA offices for certain services,” Perdue said.  “The FSA provides vital support for farmers and ranchers and they count on those services being available.  We want to offer as much assistance as possible until the partial government shutdown is resolved.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has temporarily recalled all of the more than 9,700 FSA employees to keep offices open from 8 am to 4:30 pm weekdays beginning January 24.  President Trump has already signed legislation that guarantees employees will receive all backpay missed during the lapse in funding.

For the first two full weeks under this operating plan (January 28 through February 1 and February 4 through February 8), FSA offices will be open Mondays through Fridays.  In subsequent weeks, offices will be open three days a week, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays if needed to provide the additional administrative services. 

Agricultural producers who have business with the agency can contact their FSA service center to make an appointment. 

FSA can provide these administrative services, which are critical for farmers and ranchers, because failure to perform these services would harm funded programs.  FSA staff will work on the following transactions:

  • Market Facilitation Program.
  • Marketing Assistance Loans.
  • Release of collateral warehouse receipts.
  • Direct and Guaranteed Farm Operating Loans, and Emergency Loans.
  • Service existing Conservation Reserve Program contracts.
  • Sugar Price Support Loans.
  • Dairy Margin Protection Program.
  • Agricultural Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage.
  • Livestock Forage Disaster.
  • Emergency Assistance Livestock, Honey Bees, and Farm-raised Fish Program.
  • Livestock Indemnity Program.
  • Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program.
  • Tree Assistance Program.
  • Remaining Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program payments for applications already processed.

Transactions that will not be available include, but are not limited to:

  • New Conservation Reserve Program contracts.
  • New Direct and Guaranteed Farm Ownership Loans.
  • Farm Storage Facility Loan Program.
  • New or in-process Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program applications.
  • Emergency Conservation Program.
  • Emergency Forest Rehabilitation Program.
  • Biomass Crop Assistance Program.
  • Grassroots Source Water Protection Program.

With the Office of Management and Budget, USDA reviewed all of its funding accounts that are not impacted by the lapse in appropriation. We further refined this list to include programs where the suspension of the activity associated with these accounts would significantly damage or prevent the execution of the terms of the underling statutory provision. As a result of this review, USDA was able to except more employees. Those accounts that are not impacted by the lapse in appropriation include mandatory, multiyear and no year discretionary funding including FY 2018 Farm Bill activities.

Updates to available services and offices will be made during the lapse in federal funding on the FSA shutdown webpage.  Programs managed by FSA that were re-authorized by the 2018 farm bill will be available at a later date yet to be determined.

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Jan. 18 Weekly Newsletter

Nevada Farm Bureau Newsletter For Jan. 18, 2019


Tim Wilson Named As Acting State Engineer

With the retirement of Nevada State Engineer Jason King on January 11, 2019, Bradley Crowell, Director of the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources appointed Tim Wilson to serve as the Acting State Engineer and Administrator for the Nevada Division of Water Resources. Wilson most recently has been serving as the Deputy Administrator and has been with the Division of Water Resources since 1995.

King concluded his 28 year career with the State of Nevada and had been serving in the position of the Nevada State Engineer since 2010.

“I am grateful for Jason’s service to Nevada and his steadfast leadership to thoughtfully managing our precious water resources,” Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak said in thanking King for his service, adding “We are in a new era of water management in Nevada, and my administration will continue to tackle our most challenging water issues head-on in partnership with the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the next State Engineer.”

“I am confident Tim Wilson will continue the direction and progress established under Jason’s leadership on the many critical water issues and policies that affect all Nevadans.” Governor Sisolak said.


Nevada Farm Bureau Resolution On Wildfire Adopted By AFBF

Several resolutions from Nevada have found their way to adoption by the 2019 American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) voting delegates and will be part of the organization’s new policy for the coming year. A major emphasis of the resolutions that Nevada sent forward for consideration covered using livestock as a tool for reducing fuel loads and enhancing rangelands through improved grazing practices.

Along with livestock grazing practices amendments Farm Bureau policy will also stress that every grazing and logging permit issued should include a dangerous fuel reduction plan with mandatory triggers for implementation that federal managers are not able to deviate from.

Through the new policy additions and from the basis of other on-going emphasis for greater attention, Nevada Farm Bureau is pressing to increase on-the-ground actions by federal land management agencies to improve pre-fire suppression activity. You will recall from an earlier issue of this newsletter, President Donald Trump has directed through an Executive Order attention be focused on improving federal land management activities to address the failures of current practices to properly manage fuel loads.

From an overall perspective, this this news release highlights the outline of Farm Bureau policy foundations going forward.

Another highlight from the 2019 Centennial AFBF Annual Meeting was the visit from President Trump. For those who are interested in seeing the video of his speech at the AFBF annual meeting click on this link.

Nevada Farm Bureau Earns Awards

Nevada Farm Bureau earned recognition in national Farm Bureau program areas for the work that the Silver State was able to accomplish in 2018 for Advocacy and also an award for Engagement. Being evaluated and judged by representatives of fellow Farm Bureaus for the planning and implementation of programs for these two areas is especially gratifying because of the priority that Nevada Farm Bureau has identified for the organization’s program of work…“Building a stronger and more effective advocacy program, through increased Farm Bureau member involvement, is one of our top priorities.”





Farm Bureau Meeting Identifies The Attack Of Trial Lawyers On Agriculture

One of the information conferences held at the 2019 American Farm Bureau Federation 100th Annual Convention was the emerging issue of the ways trial lawyers are carrying out an organized attack on production agriculture. The session dealt with the topics of ways that North Carolina hog producers are being hard hit and also the challenges of the $289 million verdict against the essential crop production tool of glyphosate (Roundup).

Closer to home, a Nevada dairy operation in Lyon County has been and continues to be under assault by those who are opposed to the dairy being located in their neighborhood – in spite of the area being agriculturally zoned and operating within the parameters of proper regulations and permits.



White Pine County Farm Bureau January 23 Meeting To Feature Shane Krauser

Last week’s newsletter highlighted the White Pine County Farm Bureau annual meeting in Ely, NV on Wednesday, January 23, starting at 6 p.m. We strongly encourage everyone who might be interested to make plans to attend! The meeting will feature as a special guest speaker, Shane Krauser, who is the director of the American Academy for Constitutional Education.

Krauser is also a former nationally-syndicated radio talk show host, an adjunct professor of constitutional law, an NRA firearms instructor, and an experienced trial attorney. He is an entrepreneur who is involved in a number of ventures that are designed to bring about more economic, political, and spiritual liberty. He is the author of “Your Nation to Save” and “What is Freedom? Is It For you?” and is a widely sought-after speaker throughout the United States.

The White Pine County annual meeting will be held in the Prospector Hotel, Ely and Margarita’s will be serving the meal. Guest and members are invited to bring their favorite desert to be included in the auction that will take place during the meeting activities with the proceeds from the auction going to fund portions of the White Pine County Farm Bureau scholarship program.

RSVP follow-up is encouraged with contacts welcome by emailing Gracyne Backus at

Farm Bureau Early Years And Standing Up For Farmers and Ranchers

In his book, “Forward Farm Bureau” written to cover the first 90 year history of the American Farm Bureau Federation, Stewart Truelsen, noted in the chapter “Equality for Agriculture” that one of the American Farm Bureau Federation’s overriding concerns in its first three decades was finding a solution for economic inequality.

Clarifying that the Farm Bureau’s focus wasn’t on wealth redistribution, Truelsen explained, “Farm Bureau meant equality for agriculture with business, finance and labor.” Beyond the legislative battles related to the McNary-Haugen farm bill, the emphasis also included the organization’s push for better living conditions for rural America. That included the efforts the organization put forward in support for bringing electrical service to rural farm families. Truelsen highlighted that in 1925 of more than 6.3 million farms, only 204,780 were receiving central station electrical service. American Farm Bureau Federation President Edward Ashbury O’Neal (AFBF’s fourth President and a native of Alabama) is given credit as being one of the first to suggest to President F.D.R. Roosevelt that rural electrification should be part of the New Deal. The REA was created by executive order by the President in May 1935. A year later Senator George Norris of Nebraska and Congressman Sam Rayburn of Texas introduced legislation to give the REA the power and money to make loans to build transmission and generating facilities. Farm Bureau, Trueslsen writes, “urged farmers to form rural cooperatives to take advantage of the low-cost financing – and they did.”

Farm Bureau continues to work closely with rural electric cooperatives and suppliers of essential electrical service to rural users.

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Nevada Farm Bureau Federation

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Sparks, Nevada 89431

Phone: 775-674-4000
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