MD Agricultural Management Assistance Program (AMA)

USDA: Natural Resources Conservation Service of Maryland

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Grant amount: Up to US $50,000

Anticipated deadline: Feb 15, 2020

Applicant type: Working Professional For-Profit Business Nonprofit

Funding uses: Project / Program

Location of project: Maryland

Location of residency: Maryland

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Agricultural Management Assistance Program (AMA)

Agricultural Management Assistance (AMA) provides cost share assistance to agricultural producers to voluntarily address issues such as water management, water quality, and erosion control by incorporating conservation into their farming operations.

Producers may construct or improve water management structures or irrigation structures; plant trees for windbreaks or to improve water quality; and mitigate risk through production diversification or resource conservation practices, including soil erosion control, integrated pest management, or transition to organic farming. Assistance is also available for constructing seasonal high tunnels and associated practices.

Program Features

  • The program pays financial assistance of up to 75 percent of the cost of installing conservation practices. 
  • The total AMA payments shall not exceed $50,000 per participant for any fiscal year.
  • Participants are not subject to Highly Erodible Land and Wetland Conservation provisions of the Food Security Act of 1985; however participants are subject to Adjusted Gross Income provisions of the Food Security Act of 1985.
  • Program offers an additional higher cost-share for historically underserved producers.

Program Priorities

National Priorities and National Measures 

  • To provide guidance to the State and local levels toward achieving the program purposes, NRCS has established the following national priorities:
    • Reductions of nonpoint source pollution, such as nutrients, sediment, pesticides, or excess salinity in impaired watersheds consistent with total daily maximum loads (TMDLs), where available, as well as the reduction of surface and groundwater contamination. 
    • Conservation of ground and surface water resources.
    • Reduction of emissions, such as particulate matter, nitrogen oxides (NOx), volatile organic compounds, and ozone precursors and depleters that contribute to air quality impairment violations of National Ambient Air Quality Standards.
    • Reduction in soil erosion and sedimentation from unacceptable high levels on agricultural land.
    • Promotion of at-risk species habitat conservation.
  • The national priorities will be used to guide annual funding allocations to States and for prioritizing AMA applications for funding.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Program Eligibility:
    • Be engaged in livestock or agricultural production and have annual potential sales of $1,000 or more. 
    • Have an interest in the farming operation associated with the land being offered for AMA enrollment.
    • Have control of the land for the term of the proposed contract.
    • Be in compliance with the provisions for protecting the interests of tenants and sharecroppers, including the provisions for sharing AMA payments on a fair and equitable basis.
    • Be within appropriate payment limitation requirements.
  • Land Eligibility - Includes land: 
    • on which agricultural commodities or livestock are produced such as cropland, hayland, pastureland, rangeland, and grassland;
    • land used for subsistence purposes, private non-industrial forestland or other land on which agricultural products, livestock or forest-related goods are produced; and
    • where risk may be mitigated through operation diversification or change in resource conservation practices.


  • Ineligible Entities
    • Federal, State, county, and local governments, and political subdivisions of State government (e.g., school districts, conservation districts, etc.) and entities containing these units of government or subdivisions are not eligible for AMA.
      • However, land owned by these entities may be eligible if leased to an eligible applicant. (See 440-CPM, Part 521, Subpart D.)
    • Agricultural support businesses, such as agricultural supply buyers and sellers, are not eligible to participate in AMA.
  • Applicants requesting assistance on nonindustrial private forest land must not be—
    • Principally engaged in the primary processing of raw wood products.
    • Corporations or other legal entities with publicly traded stock.