The USDA Farm Service Agency announced today that "USDA would fully implement President George W. Bush's directive to offer incentives to farmers and ranchers for opening up their land in the Conservation Reserve Program [CRP] to the public for hunting, fishing, bird watching and other recreational activities."
Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer stated that the goal of this incentive is to double public access by providing up to 7 million acres of CRP land for public access in the next 5 years in participating states.
According to a USDA Farm Service Agency news release, "The CRP public access incentive permits partnerships with existing state public access programs to identify and mark tracts of land as publicly accessible and publish maps for hunters and recreation enthusiasts. The incentive is consistent with current state public access incentives and will enhance the ability of state game departments to use hunting seasons as a wildlife management tool."
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