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News from around the Farm World for April 19, 2006
Indiana corn checkoff seeks farmers for upcoming director elections
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Corn farmers with an interest in how Indiana’s corn checkoff dollars are invested are encouraged to run for election to the Indiana Corn Marketing Council (ICMC) board of directors. ICMC directors are responsible for investing Indiana’s voluntary corn checkoff funds according to Dean Eppley, ICMC President.

Farmers interested in running for a director position should submit a petition to the ICMC office by June 16, 2006. Farmers can receive a petition by calling the ICMC office at 800-735-0195, from their county Cooperative Extension Service office, or by downloading the form from

All farmers who submit a valid petition by the deadline will be listed as a candidate on the election ballot. Voting will take place Tuesday, August 29 at the Cooperative Extension Service county offices or by absentee ballot.

Newly elected directors will begin a three-year term September 1, 2006.

According to Eppley, board members must be willing to participate in board meetings, committee meetings, and other corn checkoff functions. Board members do not receive a per diem for attending meetings, but are reimbursed for reasonable and necessary expenses in connection with their duties.

This year, ICMC has three seats up for election in Districts 2, 5, and 8.

District 2 counties include: Carroll, Cass, Elkhart, Fulton, Kosciusko, Marshall, Miami, St. Joseph and Wabash. District 5 counties are: Clinton, Boone, Tipton, Howard, Grant, Hamilton, Madison, Hendricks, Marion, Hancock, Morgan, Johnson, Shelby, Rush, Bartholomew and Decatur. District 8 counties include: Monroe, Brown, Lawrence, Jackson, Orange, Washington, Perry, Crawford, Harrison, and Floyd.

The Indiana General Assembly amended statute (IC 15-4-10) in 2001 to direct the state to establish a voluntary corn checkoff program. Producers who submit a checkoff collection form can contribute one-half cent ($0.005) per bushel on all corn sold. The ICMC oversees the distribution of these checkoff funds. The ICMC is comprised of 10 elected producers, two appointed industry representatives, and two nonvoting members representing the Indiana General Assembly.

Deadline extended to April 28 for CRP general sign-up
WASHINGTON, D.C. — USDA Secretary Mike Johanns announced last week an extension of the sign-up deadlines for both the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) and the special CRP re-enrollment and extension opportunities until April 28. The deadline for both opportunities was originally April 14.

“I encourage all eligible farmers and ranchers to take advantage of the Conservation Reserve Program enrollment options available now through April 28,” said Johanns.

“Farmers can improve our soil, water, air and wildlife habitat resources by re-enrolling and extending their CRP contracts.”

After the CRP general sign-up ends on April 28, USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) will evaluate offers based on cost and the Environmental Benefits Index (EBI) factors of wildlife, water, soil, air and enduring benefits. Accepted offers will become effective Oct. 1, 2006.

In addition, subject to a compliance review, CRP participants with contracts expiring on Sept. 30, 2007, now have until April 28 to apply for special re-enrollment or extension opportunities offered by FSA.

FSA county offices are now beginning to notify CRP participants with contracts expiring in 2008-2010 of their re-enrollment and extension opportunities. The deadline for participants to respond is June 30, 2006. For more information on CRP, contact your local FSA office or visit

American Angus Association awards Historic Herds
ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — David Lutchka, Grass Lake, Mich., and William Ramsey & Sons, Frankfort, Ind. have received the Historic Herd Award by the American Angus Association.

Lutchka established his herd at South Lyon, Mich., when he purchased his first Angus heifer in 1955 as a 4-H project for $300. He joined the American Angus Assoc. that same year.

Lutchka maintained a small herd of Angus cows while attending Eastern Michigan University. After graduating from college and marrying Joan, Lutchka increased his herd size. David and Joan’s three children, Lisa, David and Derek, were involved in junior Angus programs, and attended the National Junior Angus Shows from 1979-1994. The family is still involved in raising Angus cattle today, and the operation includes four grandchildren.

Bill Ramsey established his herd with the purchase of a registered Angus heifer as a 4-H project in 1948. In 1952, he joined the American Angus Assoc., while continuing to build his herd.

Ramsey’s sons, Jeff and Bob, also became involved in Angus while in 4-H. In 1998, Bob purchased the herd from his dad, so Bill could go into retirement. Bob and his wife, Penny, still maintain the herd today. They market their bulls into the western states. Bob is a past president of the Indiana Angus Association. Jeff and his family also have established an Angus herd.

The American Angus Association presents the Historic Angus Herd Award to Angus herds that have been in the continuous production of registered Angus cattle by the same family for 50 years or more. For more information go to or call 816-383-5100.

This farm news was published in the April 19, 2006 issue of Farm World.