Updated: Jun 10, 2019
Fragrance company donates $3.5 million to protect citrus University of California Riverside announced last Thursday that Swiss flavor and fragrance company, Givaudan, has donated $3.5 million to build a screened enclosure to protect the university’s Citrus Variety Collection which was started over 100 years ago. Over 22 acres of planted citrus specimens, collected over the past century, will be protected from citrus greening disease, or Huanglongbing, a bacterial disease which is fatal to citrus. The disease is carried by the Asian citrus psyllid, an insect which has been detected in hundreds of locations throughout Southern California. The citrus collection includes about 100 different types of citrus.
SSA to resume sending "no match" letters The Social Security Administration recently announced it will resume sending social security “no match” letters, or Employer Correction Request Notices, as early as this spring. Notices will be going to businesses who submitted wage and tax statements with names and social security numbers that do not match. Farm Employers Labor Service, an affiliate of California Farm Bureau, has detailed guidance for employers who receive these letters.
CDFA to award grants to new, disadvantaged, or urban farmers CDFA is now accepting limited proposals for the 2019 Specialty Crop Block Grant Program to benefit beginning or socially disadvantaged specialty crop growers, including urban farmers.
From CDFA: "The CDFA 2019 SCBGP Request for Concept Proposals set aside up to $3 million for proposals submitted through a separate process to support beginning and socially disadvantaged specialty crop farmers, including urban farmers, and/or promote increased access or nutrition education in underserved communities throughout California. Specialty crops include fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, and nursery crops (including floriculture). Please review the 2019 Limited Request for Proposals for detailed application instructions. This solicitation will utilize a simplified application process, and proposals selected will receive technical assistance from CDFA to develop a full proposal for submission to USDA. The intent of this solicitation is to provide a process through which organizations that have been historically underrepresented in the SCBGP can participate." The deadline for applications is April 10. Anyone interested can learn more here.
Gov. Newsom pushes for fee to clean up tainted water From the Associated Press: Gov. Gavin Newsom wants to charge California water customers up to $10 per month to help clean up contaminated water in low-income and rural areas, but he will face resistance from some legislative Democrats hesitant to impose new taxes….The fee on water customers would affect households and businesses — an idea that lawmakers killed last session. Newsom wants to combine it with fees on animal farmers, dairies and fertilizer sellers to raise about $140 million per year….Democrats hold 75 percent of the legislative seats, but some who represent moderate or agricultural districts may balk at the proposal, particularly after voters recalled a Democratic senator last year after he voted to raise the gas tax. https://apnews.com/ace7b7f0f7324cde95445f839081304c
State Water Project allocations increase to 70% From the Department of Water Resources: Following several strong winter storms that brought snowpack and precipitation to above average levels, the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) today announced it will increase the 2019 State Water Project (SWP) allocation. Most SWP contractors will now receive 70 percent of their requests for the 2019 calendar year, an increase from the 35 percent allocation announced last month.
“Just ten weeks ago it looked like we may have been facing another dry year in California,” said DWR Director Karla Nemeth. “Fortunately, we’ve turned a corner and now it’s shaping up to be a great year for water supply. California’s hydrology varies year to year, which is why all Californians must work together to use water wisely.”
You can read more from the press release here.