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County Committee

David Gardner
Craig Long
Ed Baker
Judith Knisely

Executive Director

Mark Phillipson

Loan Manager

Russell Mason

Farm Programs

Tammy Brooks
Mary Ann Allen
Cassandra Decker
Linda McGuire
Herb Stinemates

Farm Loans

Tamee Renwick

Office Hours

Monday - Friday
7:30 - 4:30


FSA .................extension 2
NRCS ...............extension 3
Fax .................(309)734-8337




December, 2003 Newsletter

2004 DCP Contracts

Most of you remember last year’s complicated sign-up process of selecting base and yield options, providing yield evidence, and signing 2002 and 2003 contracts.  The 2004 sign-up process is much easier as you will only be signing a contract for the 2004 program year.  DCP contracts include both direct and countercyclical payments.

Direct Payments: These payments are guaranteed and are not dependent on market prices.  Payments are calculated by taking 85% of your base times yield times the payment rate. Direct payments may be issued 50% in advance.  By producer choice you may receive them in either December 2003 or January 2004.  The final 2004 direct payment is received in October 2004.

2004 Direct Payments Rates

                 Commodity                    Advance Rate                          Total Rate 

Corn $0.14 $0.28
Soybeans $0.22 $0.44
Wheat $0.26 $0.52
Oats $0.012 $0.024

Countercyclical Payments:  These payments will only be disbursed in years in which the 12 month marketing year price is low.  Payment rates are calculated by taking the target price minus direct payment rate minus the national average price. The 2004 target price for corn is $ 2.63 and soybeans $5.80.  Countercyclical payments for 2004 may be issued 35% in advance in October 2004, 35% in February 2005, and the final 30% in October 2005.  Each time the payment rate will be recalculated with a revised projected market price.
The marketing year for countercyclical payments begins in the fall of the year in which the crop is harvested.  The easiest way for me to remember is that direct advances are made before the crop is planted and countercyclical advances begin after the crop is harvested.  Since countercyclical payments are not guaranteed, it is possible for producers to receive an advance and have it later refunded if market prices increase.  Please keep this in mind when you decide on taking these advances. 

Countercyclical payment example:  For example purposes only we will say that in October 2004, USDA projects the next 12 months of market corn prices will be $2.15.  The CC advance will be calculated by taking the $2.63 target price minus the $.28 direct payment minus the $2.15 projected national average times 35% to equal 7 cents.  This formula will be used again in February 2005 for the second advance.  The final formula will be used in October 2005 using an actual 12-month national average price instead of a projected one.




Commodity Loans 

Most of you are making decisions on selling or storing your grain.  If your decision is to store grain you need to consider the use of our nine month loan.  Loans allow you the option to maintain ownership of the grain in hopes of higher marketing opportunities while offering you very low cost operating capital.

Warren County 2003 loan rates are $2.00 for corn and $5.11 for soybeans.  Loans mature at the end of the ninth month following the month of disbursement.  Loans disbursed in December will have a September 30, 2004 maturity date while loans disbursed in January will have an October 31, 2004 maturity.  Loan applications may be taken now for either month of disbursement.  We recommend you apply now for January disbursement.  The deadline to apply for loan is May 31, 2004.

The December interest rate is 2.375%.  On January 1st all open loans will convert to the announced January interest rate for the remainder of the loan period. FSA offers the cheapest operating capital available and we consider this the strongest reason to use the loan program.  A service fee of ½% of the gross loan amount not to exceed $45 for one bin or warehouse receipt will also be assessed.  Additional bins or warehouse receipts will be assessed an additional $3.

Warehouse loans require evidence of storage paid through loan maturity.  Please work with the elevator to let them know your expected month of loan disbursal.  Lien searches and lien waivers are required prior to loan disbursement.  Lien searches are currently being completed in about 3 days.  FSA will require both producer and spouse to sign the note.  We encourage you to use power of attorney forms to meet spousal signature authority. 

Loans may be repaid at anytime during the life of the loan.  Any bushel increment of a farm stored loan may be repaid, while a full warehouse receipt must be repaid if warehouse stored.  Many of you have multiple receipts on a warehouse loan so you have the option of multiple repayments through the loan period.  Settlement may also be by forfeiture or repayment with the posted county price should prices fall below loan rate.

 Lien Waivers

Producers applying for 2003 commodity loans must provide FSA with a lien waiver from any lender with a crop lien and all cash rent landlords.  The requirement of lien waivers from cash rent landlords is relatively new for most of you.  If you are planning on taking a loan please remember this requirement.  Since cash rent landlords will also need to sign the 2004 DCP contract, we urge you to have these lien waivers prepared at the same time so you can have both signed during the same visit. 


Since 1998, Loan Deficiency Payments (LDP) have been an active part of your marketing decisions.  Because of higher market prices, LDP’s are not currently available for stored corn or soybeans.  The deadline to apply for LDP is May 31, 2004.  Please keep this date in mind should market prices fall below our county loan rates of $2.00 for corn and $5.11 for soybeans.

Many of you may be eligible for corn that was sold out of the field or delivered towards a contract.  LDP payment was available for corn, delivered to the elevator for immediate sale or settlement of a contract, from October 1, 2003 through October 14, 2003 and October 16, 2003 through October 22, 2003.  If your corn settlement sheet shows sales with these delivery dates you are eligible for a field direct LDP.

If this pertains to you please bring in a copy of this settlement sheet.  If in doubt bring in the sheet and we will be able to tell you if you are eligible.  Since payment will be based on posted county prices on the dates of delivery it makes no difference whether you bring us this sheet in December or wait until January. 

2001 and 2002 Crop Disaster Program 

FSA offices are accepting crop loss disaster applications for any crop insurance unit that had suffered a production loss of at least 35% in one of the years 2001 or 2002.  USDA has recently announced the deadline for 2001 or 2002 disaster applications to be January 30, 2004.  Please check your crop insurance records to see if you may be eligible for this program.  There is not currently any disaster program available for any 2003 crop losses.


Direct Deposit 

Almost all of our program payments are disbursed by direct deposit.  This process works remarkably well when you keep us accurately informed with bank account changes.  During payment processing of the final 2003 DCP direct payments, we received a large amount of rejected direct deposits due to closed or changed accounts.  Please make sure that our records accurately reflect your bank account status.


Continuous CRP 

Many of you may be considering waterways or filterstips under the continuous CRP signup.  Applications can be taken now and processed by NRCS through the winter and early spring to be ready for construction this spring.  CRP offers 10-15 year contracts with annual rental payments based on soil types.  The real attractive part of the program is the costshare assistance it offers.  There is currently a 50% costshare to go along with an additional 40% incentive costshare. 

Conservation Compliance 

USDA benefits that require Conservation Plan Compliance include DCP payments, CRP rental payments, LDP’s, Commodity loans, and crop insurance.  Please make sure you understand the requirements of these plans as NRCS makes annual status reviews on these plans.

 2004 Record Changes 

As we roll our farm records into a new program year please make sure you report farm tenant and ownership changes to our office timely.  Payments are based on these farm records so it is important to have them correct.  Requests for 2004 farm reconstitutions should be requested now in order to have them completed prior to preparing your 2004 DCP contracts. Address changes also need to be reported.

County Committee Election 

David Gardner was recently reelected as a member to the County Committee.  He joins Craig Long and Ed Baker on this Committee.  The County Committee is an elected group of individuals that help regulate and implement FSA programs.


We encourage you to utilize the following websites to increase your knowledge of USDA programs:

     www.usda.gov  - USDA website with information on new programs. 

www.fsa.usda.gov – National FSA website with links to daily posted county prices for any county in the nation.

www.sc.egov.usda.gov – Website devoted to electronic access to FSA forms.

www.nrcs.usda.gov – National NRCS website.


The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in its programs on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or family status. Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact the USDA’s TARGET Center at 202-720-2600 (voice and TDD) .

To file a complaint, write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, Room 326-W, Whiten Building, 14th and Independence Avenue, Washington DC, 20250-9410, or call 202-720-5964 (voice or TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.