Washington Compost Expense Program
OLYMPIA, WA – The Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) is launching the Compost Reimbursement Program to encourage on-farm compost use. Approximately $1 million will be distributed annually on a first-come, first-served basis.
All commercial Washington farmers – including those in agriculture, silviculture, aquaculture – are eligible for the program. Participants must agree to conduct soil sampling before and for several years following the compost application. Additionally, the compost must be purchased from a business with a solid waste handling permit.
Producers must first apply to and be approved for the program, ensuring that their business and compost source are eligible. Once approved, program participants must sign a grant agreement contract and conduct pre-application soil sampling before applying the compost. After expenses are incurred, applicants will submit a reimbursement application for their total expenses. The expenses are then calculated and the applicant is reimbursed for 50 percent of their expenses, not to exceed $10,000 total per business.
WSDA anticipates accepting applications beginning in September. But producers can sign up now to be notified once the application period opens. Applications will continue to be accepted until the allotted funds are spent each fiscal year, which runs from July through June.
The Washington State Legislature established the Compost Reimbursement Program earlier this year when they passed and funded Revised Code of Washington 15.04.420. WSDA has been setting up the infrastructure since then and will begin accepting applications once the infrastructure is in place to collect, process, and reimburse the grant applications.