Area farmers are encouraged to register early for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CRP) is a voluntary program run by the Natural Resources Conservation Service that encourages producers to adopt conservation practices on their properties. Farmers that own cropland, grassland, prairie, pastureland and forestland can apply for funding to implement conservation activities. Potential participants are asked to complete a self-screening checklist to determine whether or not the new program will work for them. Following the self-screening producers will be ranked based on the level of environmental performance. In the past year, NRCS has granted more than $20 million to Iowa farmers for conservation purposes. The next cutoff date for application is January 7th and applications can be obtained at the Marion County NRCS office located at 1445 Lake Drive in Knoxville.