ELIZABETHTOWN— Pennsylvania Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding on Wednesday, while visiting a farm in Elizabethville, announced the availability of $13 million in Pennsylvania tax credits for on-farm conservation efforts. 

“The Pennsylvania Farm Bill recognizes the deep culture of stewardship among Pennsylvania farmers,” Redding said. “The newly expanded REAP program eases the financial responsibility of this stewardship while supporting viable, profitable farms and healthy waterways.” 

REAP is a Pennsylvania tax credit program for agricultural producers who implement best management practices or purchase equipment that reduces the amount of nutrient and sediment runoff and improves the quality of Pennsylvania’s waters.

This is the 12th year Pennsylvania farmers have been able to take advantage of REAP tax credits. As a result of the PA Farm Bill, this year funding has increased to $13 million, up from $10 million. In addition, farmers may now receive up to $250,000 in any seven yearseven-year period, and spouses filling jointly can use utilize REAP Tax Credits. 

The most common projects approved are for no-till planting and precision ag equipment, waste storage facilities, conservation plans, Nutrient Management Plans, and protecting animal heavy-use areas, like barnyards. Cover crops and riparian stream buffers are also common REAP-eligible practices.

The 2019-20 REAP application packet, as well as other information about REAP, is available on the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s website, agriculture.pa.gov

— RICK DANDES

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