United States Code
USC most recently checked for updates: Sep 24, 2022
Nothing in this section affects the availability of payment information (including payment amounts and the names and addresses of recipients of payments) under section 552 of title 5.
The Secretary may release or disclose to the Attorney General information covered by paragraph (1) to the extent necessary to enforce the natural resources conservation programs referred to in paragraph (1)(B)(i).
The Secretary may release or disclose information covered by paragraph (1) to a person or Federal, State, local, or tribal agency working in cooperation with the Secretary in providing technical and financial assistance described in paragraph (1)(B)(i) or collecting information from data gathering sites.
An owner, operator, or producer may consent to the disclosure of information described in paragraph (1).
The participation of the owner, operator, or producer in, and the receipt of any benefit by the owner, operator, or producer under, this chapter or any other program administered by the Secretary may not be conditioned on the owner, operator, or producer providing consent under this paragraph.
Section 2276(c) of title 7 shall apply with respect to the release of information collected in any manner or for any purpose prohibited by this subsection.
Except for a person who is a tenant on land that is subject to a conservation reserve contract that has been extended by the Secretary, the Secretary shall provide adequate safeguards to protect the interests of tenants and sharecroppers, including provision for sharing, on a fair and equitable basis, in payments under the programs established under subchapters II through IV, VII, and VIII.
In the preparation and application of a conservation compliance plan under subchapter II or similar plan required as a condition for assistance from the Department of Agriculture, the Secretary shall permit persons to secure technical assistance from approved sources, as determined by the Secretary, other than the Natural Resources Conservation Service. If the Secretary rejects a technical determination made by such a source, the basis of the Secretary’s determination must be supported by documented evidence.
The Secretary shall not enroll more than 25 percent of the cropland in any county in the conservation reserve program established under subpart B of part I of subchapter IV and wetland reserve easements under section 3865c of this title.
The Secretary may grant a waiver to exclude acreage enrolled under section 3831a of this title from the limitations in paragraph (1)(A) with the concurrence of the county government of the county involved.
The limitations established under paragraph (1) shall not apply to cropland that is subject to an easement under subpart B of part I of subchapter IV that is used for the establishment of shelterbelts and windbreaks.
For the purposes of enrolling land in a wetland reserve easement under section 3865c of this title, the limitations established under paragraph (1) shall not apply to cropland designated by the Secretary with subclass w in the land capability classes IV through VIII because of severe use limitations due to soil saturation or inundation.
In calculating the percentages described in paragraph (1), the Secretary shall include any acreage that was included in calculations of percentages made under such paragraph, as in effect on the day before
In carrying out each conservation program under this chapter, the Secretary shall ensure that the application process used by producers and landowners is streamlined to minimize complexity and eliminate redundancy.
The Secretary shall carry out a review of the application forms and processes for each conservation program covered by this subsection.
Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a written notification of completion of the requirements of this subsection.
In carrying out any conservation program administered by the Secretary, the Secretary shall encourage practices that relate to water quality and water quantity that protect source water for drinking water (including protecting against public health threats) while also benefitting agricultural producers.
An increased payment under subparagraph (A)(ii) shall not exceed 90 percent of practice costs associated with planning, design, materials, equipment, installation, labor, management, maintenance, or training.
In each of fiscal years 2019 through 2031, the Secretary shall use to carry out this subsection not less than 10 percent of any funds available for conservation programs administered by the Secretary under this chapter (other than the conservation reserve program established under subpart B of part I of subchapter IV).
Funds available for a specific conservation program shall not be transferred to fund a different conservation program under this chapter.
The Secretary may not prohibit, through a contract, easement, or agreement under this chapter, a participant in a conservation program administered by the Secretary under this chapter from participating in, and receiving compensation from, an environmental services market if 1 of the purposes of the market is the facilitation of additional conservation benefits that are consistent with the purposes of the conservation program administered by the Secretary.