DOAG: Agriculture Viability Grants (Q & A)


What is the Agriculture Viability Grants Program? 
 
   The Agriculture Viability Grants Program consists of three (3) separate grants opportunities as follows:

 
1) Farm Reinvestment Grant (visit this page for details and an application)

2) Farm Transition Grant (visit this page for details and an application)

3) Farm Viability Grant Program for Municipalities (visit this page for details and an application)

 
Farm Reinvestment Grant (FRG)
When is the application deadline date?
The date is the same every year, April 30.
 
Does it do me any good to send in my grant application as early as possible?
No, since all applicants will be graded on the whole after the deadline date.
 
What is maximum amount that a producer may ask for?
May ask for up to $40,000.
 
Is there an applicant match involved? 
Yes, a 50% cash match is involved by the producer.  This means that if you have a project that will cost in total $20,000, we will pay the applicant $10,000 and they will have to match $10,000. 
 
Is the grant paid up front? 
 No, in order to receive any grant money, you will have to finish your project and then after an independent audit of all project costs, a site visit and a Certificate of Occupancy  (CO) from the town, you will be paid. 
 
What can I use this grant for? 
Basically can use it for 3 purposes, all dealing with production agriculture.  1) the construction of new buildings, 2) the refurbishing of a existing building for the purpose of diversification or 3) the construction of a new Greenhouse.
 
Can a beginning farmer apply for this grant?
No, in order to be eligible, you must be an existing farm at least 3 years old and be able to submit 3 years of Schedule F, Form 1120 S or Schedule C along with a current Farmer Tax Exempt Certificate.
 
How do I apply for this grant? 
Fill out the application form and make sure all necessary attachments are included.  The most important attachment will be your farm business plan as this is how the grants are graded and weeded out. There is a checklist of necessary attachments  included in the application.
 
How long do I have to complete the project? 
You will have one year from the time the contract is signed by the Attorney Generalís office.
 
Can I start the project as soon as I know that I will receive the grant?
No, the State Bonding Commission must first allocate the funding for it.  After they have done so, you must sign a contract with us and then with the Attorney General and you may not start the project until the final signature is on the contract. This whole process can take from 2-3 months.   
 
Should I have all my necessary permits for building ready prior to grant application?
You had better get started on applying for them with the town ASAP as Town Permits may take longer than you think.
 

Farm Transition Grant (FTG)
 
When is the application deadline date? 
It is due the second Friday of November of each year.
 
Does it do me any good to send in my grant application as early as possible?
No, since all applicants will be graded on the whole after the deadline date.
 
What is maximum amount an applicant for the FTG request?
Up to $49,999.
 
Who is eligible for the Farm Transition Grant (FTG)
The FTG applicant must be a producer or an agricultural coop.
 
Is there an applicant match involved? 
Yes, a 50% cash match must be supplied by the producer and an Ag Cooperative for the FTG.  This means that if you have a project that will cost in total $20,000, we will pay the applicant $10,000 and they will have to match $10,000.
 
Can a beginning farmer apply for the FTG?
Yes, but they had better have a good farm business plan to even think about receiving a grant.
 
What projects can the FTG grant money be used for?
This is how it is very much different from the Farm Reinvestment Grant.  It can be used for any farm production project except the purchase of plants or animals. This means it can be used for the purchase of farm equipment, fencing, machinery, energy efficiency improvements to the production facility, buildings, irrigation and more.  
 
How is the grant money paid to the applicant?
For the FTG, the money is paid after the project is completed, we receive an independent audit of all project bills, a project report and a visual inspection is completed.  A CO is also required for any building.

How do I apply for this grant? 
Fill out the application form and make sure all necessary attachments are included.  The most important attachment will be your farm business plan as this is how the grants are graded and weeded out. There is a checklist of necessary attachments  included in the application.
 
Does it do me any good to send in my grant application as early as possible?
No, since all applicants will be graded on the whole after the deadline date.
 
How long do I have to complete the project? 
You will have one year from the time the contract is signed by the Attorney Generals office.
 
Can I start the project as soon as I know that I will receive the grant?
No, you may not start the project until the Attorney Generals office signs the contract.  This usually means that you may not start until the 1st or 2nd week of February. 
 
 
 
Farm Viability Grant for Municipalities & 501 c(3) Agricultural Non Profits (FVG)
 
When is the application deadline date? 
It is due the second Friday of November of each year.
 
Does it do me any good to send in my grant application as early as possible?
No, since all applicants will be graded on the whole after the deadline date.
 
What is maximum amount an applicant for the FVG may ask for?
May ask for up to $49,999.
 
Who is eligible for the Farm Viability Grant (FVG)
FVG may only be used by towns, Regional Council of Governments and 501 c(3) agricultural non profits.
 
Is there an applicant match involved?
Yes, the municipality must supply a 50% match that can either be in cash or in kind services.  A Non Profit applying for the FTG must supply a 40% match that can either be cash or in kind services.
 
What projects can the FVG grant money be used for?
This money can be used by a town, CT Conference of Municipalities, and 501 c(3) agricultural non profits to: implement local land use or agricultural regulations, implement farmland protection strategies, provide educational workshops, fund advertising for local or regional agriculture, to set up local regional markets and more. 
 
How is the grant money paid to the applicant?
They may receive an upfront payment of up to 50% prior to the start of the project, and then receive a 25% payment when project is half completed and the remainder is sent after the project is complete and a final report is submitted. 
 
A non profit in the FVG may receive an upfront payment of up to 50% prior to the start of the project, and then receive a 25% payment when project is half completed and the remainder is sent after the project is complete and a final report is submitted.
 
How do I apply for this grant? 
Fill out the application form and make sure all necessary attachments are included.  The most important attachment will be your proposal (business plan) as this is how the grants are graded and weeded out. There is a checklist of necessary attachments  included in the application.
 
Does it do me any good to send in my grant application as early as possible?
No, since all applicants will be graded on the whole after the deadline date.
 
How long do I have to complete the project? 
You will have one year from the time the contract is signed by the Attorney Generals office.
 
Can I start the project as soon as I know that I will receive the grant?
No, you may not start the project until the Attorney Generals office signs the contract.  This usually means that you may not start until the 1st or 2nd week of February.