TEMPLE, TEXAS, Jan. 6, 2012- USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) State Conservationist Salvador Salinas reminds agriculture producers that the ranking period cut-off date for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) is January 13, 2012. Producers interested in CSP should submit applications to their local NRCS office by the deadline so their applications can be considered during the first ranking period of 2012.“CSP gives conservation minded producers the ability to apply and build on their current stewardship efforts,” says Salinas. “Farmers and ranchers actively engaged in natural resource conservation practice have the opportunity to earn financial rewards through CSP.”CSP is a voluntary five-year program offered to landowners statewide through continuous signup. Producers interested in CSP should submit applications to their local NRCS office by the deadline so their applications can be considered during this first ranking period in 2012.Eligible lands include cropland, pastureland, rangeland and nonindustrial forestland and agricultural land under the jurisdiction of Indian tribes. Individual landowners, legal entities and Indian tribes may be eligible to apply for CSP assistance. Participants will have the opportunity to receive payments for practices that maintain and improve water and soil quality, as well as enhance wildlife habitat.Interested producers can obtain the information from the programs section of the Texas NRCS website http://www.tx.nrcs.usda.gov, or contact their USDA-NRCS field office.Helping People Help the LandUSDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Ave., S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (800) 795-3272 (voice) or (202) 720-6382 (TDD).