Patricia Hobson
Polk, Manatee, Hardee and southern counties
1-800-320-3503 (FL only), ext. 6516

Jessica Stempien
Hillsborough, Pinellas and northern counties
1-800-320-3503 (FL only), ext. 2125


Mini-FARMS is a spinoff of the Facilitating Agricultural Resource Management Systems (FARMS) Program, which is a cost-share reimbursement program for agricultural projects that conserve water and protect water quality within the boundaries of the SWFWMD. While the FARMS Program funds larger projects, the Mini-FARMS Program reimburses growers for 75 percent of their costs, up to a maximum of $5,000 per approved water resources project.

The Mini-FARMS Program is managed by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS). FDACS works with local soil and water conservation districts and the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) to administer the program with area agriculturalists. The SWFWMD provides funding and technical support for the program.

Key Mini-FARMS Guidelines

  1. Projects are located within the boundaries of the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
  2. Recipients will be required to fund the project then request reimbursement for approved expenditures.
  3. Reimbursement rates are generally 75 percent for water quantity reduction and/or water quality improvement best management practices (BMPs). There is a cap of $5,000 of cost-share reimbursement per project. If cost-share exceeds this amount, the project would be considered for a FARMS project.
  4. Projects must provide one or more resource benefits that include: water quality improvement; reduction of Floridan aquifer system withdrawals; conservation, restoration or augmentation of the area’s water resources and ecology.
  5. All proposals will include a site visit consisting of SWFWMD or FDACS or IFAS representatives.
  6. Funding is limited and subject to available fiscal year funding.
  7. A three-year contract will be required for approved projects, dependent upon the type of project, the service life of the project components and cost-benefit ratio.
  8. Applications are accepted through selected local soil and water conservation districts.
    (Contact FDACS or SWFWMD FARMS staff for further information.)
  9. Program cornerstones are reimbursement for pump shutoff switches, soil moisture measuring devices, surficial water table monitoring wells and weather stations.
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