Producers will be making their 2009 AgriInvest deposit at the participating financial institution of their choice. Up until now, AgriInvest funds sat in the government’s General Revenue account. Those funds will now be transferred to the producer’s AgriInvest account at a financial institution. The 2009 deposit notices should start to appear in mailboxes over the coming weeks with the necessary information including deadlines. With the move to using financial institutions, AgriInvest is now one step closer to how the old NISA program worked. Under AgriInvest, producers can deposit up to 1.5 per cent of their Allowable Net Sales and receive a matching government contribution. Unlike NISA, there’s no longer a trigger mechanism for removing funds. You can take out the money whenever you want. So why doesn’t government just send out the 1.5 per cent and not require a matching producer contribution and a deposit account? The rational is probably that producers are more likely to grow their AgriInvest account for a rainy day if the money has to all be deposited into an account. A government contribution of 1.5 per cent doesn’t sound like a lot, but there will be many grain farms with a million dollars in sales in 2009, meaning a government contribution of $15,000. Payments are capped at Allowable Net Sales of $1.5 million. I’m Kevin Hursh.

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