The Center recently upgraded the software for its FairRent program to provide assistance to farmers attempting to deal with the new wrinkles of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002.

“There is little doubt that the 2002 farm bill upped the ante for what goes into the thought process of land rental decisions,” says Kevin Klair, Extension farm management economist at the Center. “The question both producers and landowners are asking is whether the new farm bill justifies higher land rents.

“To answer this question, you must be able to determine direct payments and factor in loan deficiency and counter-cyclical payment thresholds for the parcel under consideration.”

Users will need to supply the farm base acres and yields for program crops and local loan rates, he said. “FarmRent will take it from there. You will be able to determine how the farm bill impacts land rental decisions for both cash and share rent.”

FairRent retails for $95, he said. For more information, write to the Center for Financial Management, 130 Classroom Office Building, 1994 Buford Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55108, call 800 234-1111 or visit them on the Web at www.cffm.umn.edu.