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$18.4 million for water quality protection projects on New York livestock farms

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Staff Writer |
New York farm
Empire State   The deadline to apply is April 16

$18.4 million in grant funding is available to help New York livestock farms implement water quality protection projects.

The funding will be provided through the final round of the Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation Waste Storage and Transfer System Program, a $50 million program launched in 2017.

The program is part of the Governor's historic Clean Water Infrastructure Act, which would double under the 2019-2020 Executive Budget proposal to $5 billion. The application period is currently open and closes April 16, 2019.

The program, administered by the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets, funds projects that will allow livestock farms to better manage and store nutrients, such as manure, and to protect ground water and nearby waterways.

These grants will help farmers meet New York State Department of Environmental Conservation requirements and support the state's comprehensive effort to reduce the frequency of harmful algal blooms in upstate waterbodies.

Since the program's launch, nearly $32 million has been awarded to 89 farms.

County Soil and Water Conservation Districts can apply for Round 3 of the Waste Storage and Transfer System program on behalf of eligible farmers.

The maximum award amount per proposal is $385,000, which includes funding for engineering and construction expenses. Grants will help CAFO-permitted farms offset the cost of manure storage construction, site preparation, and associated best management practices.

New York State has more than 500 CAFO farms, most of which are dairy farms with 300 or more cows. CAFOs can also include associated livestock operations such as beef, poultry and equine farms.

The application and additional information are available on the Department of Agriculture and Markets' website. The deadline to apply is April 16, 2019.

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