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Attention Certified Crop Advisors

Water Quality Coalitions Seeking CCAs to Train Members on Nitrogen Management Plans

Central Valley Water Quality Coalitions are again seeking highly motivated CCAs to train their members to complete a nitrogen management plan (NMP). Over the last 16 months, 23 CCAs were signed up, trained and conducted 51 trainings.

As in the past program, CCAs will be hired to give half-day training sessions at locations throughout the Central Valley. Interested CCAs must first complete a mandatory curriculum training session before presentations can be given on behalf of the coalitions. CCA curriculum training events are being scheduled for January and February 2018; coalition grower NMP training meetings are expected to continue in 2017 and beyond. CCAs will be paid a minimum of $500 for each grower certification program and will be under contract to CURES, the organization that will be coordinating this program.

CCAs will be trained to give the NMP certification curriculum by Terry Prichard, irrigation specialist emeritus for UC Davis, and other experts. The curriculum being used for the grower trainings was developed in cooperation with the University of California and California Department of Food and Agriculture and is approved by the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board for use in this program.

Regulatory Background

Growers who belong to Central Valley Water Quality Coalitions are under new requirements per the Irrigated Lands Regulatory Program (ILRP) to keep "on farm" a Nitrogen Management Plan (NMP) to track nitrogen fertilizer applications. If they farm irrigated crop land that is "highly vulnerable" to nitrate leaching, each NMP must be certified by:

  1. Certified Crop Advisor (CCA) with a Nitrogen Plan Certification
  2. Certified Professional Agronomist or Soil Scientist
  3. Technical Service Provider certified in nutrient management by NRCS
  4. Grower certified via participation in a training program that is approved by the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board Executive Officer.

Growers who choose option 4, self-certification, will need to attend sessions with content presented by CCAs who have gone through this training program. Upon completion, growers will be certified to sign off on their own NMP.

Project Management and Funding

This project is managed by CURES with funding from the CDFA Fertilizer Research and Education Program. CURES will facilitate the CCA training sessions and coordinate placement of CCAs into coalition grower events. CCAs will be paid by CURES a minimum of $500 per grower training event. CCAs must attend a curriculum training session put on by this program.

To sign up for a curriculum training session, please contact:

Rivkah Cohen at 831-240-9533 or rivkah.cohen@curesworks.org

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