Extension Agent: Beef quality management program set
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By Joe Janak
Cattle producers are encouraged to register for the upcoming Beef 706 - Beef Quality Management program Jan. 11-12, 2012, on Texas A&M University's campus in College Station.
Beef 706 is a Beef Checkoff-funded program available for cattle producers to attend and learn about quality and safety issues that affect your operation. While attending, you will have the opportunity to see and experience the challenges facing the industry.
At the program, you will learn what factors affect beef's palatability, receive information to help you utilize your herd's genetics, performance and characteristics appropriately, work with others to fabricate a carcass and network with professionals and your peers in the industry.
After completion of the Beef 706 course, you may receive four Beef Quality Assurance credits to go toward the Texas Beef Quality Producer Program. In order to register, you can either visit texasbeef.info/706/ or call the office at 1-800-846-4113.
Ag tax-exempt status
Ag producers are encouraged to apply for their ag tax-exempt status before purchasing items in the new year. Beginning Jan. 1, a person claiming an exemption from sales tax on the purchase of certain items used in the production of agricultural and timber products is required to have a Texas Agriculture and Timber Exemption Registration Number (Ag/Timber Number).
The State Comptroller's office has announced the availability of the new online application for a registration number at getreadytexas.org. It is fairly quick to apply and when you apply online, you will get your number at the completion of the application. You will be able to print your confirmation letter and a copy of your application. A copy of your confirmation letter will be mailed to you for your records.
Texas pecan short course
Each year, Texas AgriLife Extension hosts the Texas Pecan Short Course at College Station in January. This year, the course is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Jan. 23 through Thursday, completing at noon Friday, Jan. 27. The course is a very in-depth program for those seriously interested in growing pecans in an orchard situation or those managing native pecans. To register, contact Kay Sanders at 979-845-7694 or through online registration site: events.tamu.edu/EmsRegics/TexsPecanShortCourse2012.
Drought tax implications
This year, the extensive drought has caused numerous producers to sell a larger number of livestock than normal. A farmer who sells livestock because of a shortage of water, grazing, feed production, or other consequences of a weather-related condition may postpone the payment of income tax on the taxable gain from the sale. There are two separate and distinct tax treatments, both of which apply only to weather related sales of livestock in excess of normal business practice.
One, an election to postpone gain by repurchasing livestock within a two-year period applies to draft, breeding or dairy animals that will be replaced within a two-year period. The election to postpone reporting the taxable gain for one year applies to all livestock. The two-year replacement period can be extended to four years if the area is eligible for assistance by the federal government. The Secretary of the Treasury can extend the replacement period for an even longer period of time if the weather condition continues for more than three years. The gain realized on the sale does not have to be recognized if the proceeds are used to purchase replacement livestock within two years of the end of the tax year of the sale.
A second exception option allows the taxpayer to postpone reporting the income by one year. If you have sold livestock because of unfavorable weather conditions, visit with your tax preparer about these options.
The Internet is being used to educate us all, and a "Brush Management: What to Do and Not Do in a Drought" will be the topic of a webinar on Jan. 5, presented by Will Hatler, an AgriLife Extension rangeland program specialist in Stephenville. This will be the first in the 2012 webinar series offered by AgriLife Extension's ecosystem science and management unit and producers can log-on and view these.
The webinars, which offer a way to earn Texas Department of Agriculture continuing education units online, are scheduled from noon to 1 p.m. every first Thursday of the month. This webinar, which will qualify for one pesticide continuing education unit, can be accessed at naturalresourcewebinars.tamu.edu.
Joe Janak is a Victoria County extension agent.