April 13, 2018 is cutoff date

USDA’s Kansas Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has set the cutoff date for submitting applications for the Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) program for April 13, 2018.  
For 2018, NRCS expanded the conservation priority categories, allowing applicants more choices to target their application.  And a portion of this year’s funding is targeted for historically underserved producers.
This year’s grant carves out 25% of the funding for applicants from underserved producers, veteran farmers and ranchers, or community-based organizations representing these groups.  This web page has more information on historically underserved producer criteria.
CIG is a program to spur the development and adoption of innovative conservation practices and technologies.  In general, CIG funds pilot projects, field demonstrations, and on-farm conservation projects that gather statistical data on conservation practices that can be done using typical farm equipment.
There are six priority categories for 2018: Data Analytics for Natural Resources Conservation; Precision Conservation Approaches; Grazing Lands (Invasive Species); Soil Quality/Soil Health; Water Quality and Quantity; and Wildlife (Pollinator Conservation).
Eligible applicants are nongovernmental entities, state and local government units, individuals, and American Indian tribes.
NRCS will award up to $50,000 in matching funds per project.  A total of $200,000 is available for fiscal year 2018.  The project’s matching contribution can be in-kind matching rather than a dollar-for-dollar match.  As an example, the dollar equivalent salary the applicant is contributing to the project can be used as part of the matching portion of the grant.  
Applications must be submitted by 4 p.m.  CST on April 13, 2018 on grants.gov.  The application process is available online and more information about CIG can be found on the Kansas NRCS web site.