September 17th, 1999


TO:          All Reinsured Companies
             All Risk Management Field Offices
             All Other Interested Parties
FROM:        Kenneth D. Ackerman  9-17-99  /s/ Ken Ackerman

SUBJECT:     Expansion of Optional Unit Agreement to Pennsylvania


The Risk Management Agency (RMA) authorized for the 1999 crop year optional units by section equivalents for producers in the state of Maine. These producers expressed dissatisfaction with the previous unit structure because: 1) they were limited to optional units by Farm Serial Number (FSN), and 2) different methods of determining optional units for similar crops are used in other parts of the country. Pennsylvania producers have expressed similar concerns and have requested they be able to determine optional units for the 2000 crop year under the same procedures available to Maine producers.


Beginning with the 2000 crop year and consistent with the Basic Provisions, the guidelines contained in the 2000 FCIC 18010 Crop Insurance Handbook, Exhibit 5, may be used for producers in Pennsylvania to establish optional units on a section equivalent basis. These guidelines are restricted to annual crops whose basic and crop provisions allow for units located in separate sections, section equivalents (in the absence of sections), or FSN (in the absence of sections or section equivalents or where boundaries are not readily discernable), and are applicable ONLY in areas 1) that HAVE NOT been surveyed using sections or section equivalents such as Spanish grants or 2) in areas surveyed using sections or section equivalents and the boundaries are not readily discernible.

BULLETIN NO.: MGR-99-033 2

A copy of the RMA GUIDELINES FOR SECTION EQUIVALENTS, and illustrations (example maps) for training purposes are available by contacting the Product Development Division at 816-926-7743.


This bulletin is for the purpose of expansion of Optional Unit Agreement to Pennsylvania and the disposal date is June 30, 2001.