Wisconsin DNR was authorized funds through the 2014 Farm Bill for the funding of the Voluntary Public Access and Habitat Incentive Program, and have received $1.3 million for the continued funding of VPA-HIP.
The VPA-HIP provides opportunities to increase public access for fishing, hunting, and wildlife viewing on private lands. There are currently over 38,000 acres participating in VPA-HIP.
Those enrolled in VPA-HIP receive annual lease payments based on the type of land, and the payments are made at the beginning of the contract. Enrollees also receive technical assistance for habitat enhancement, and those who complete the recommended practices are eligible for habitat-based financial payments in addition to the lease payments.
Forestland leases pay $15 per acre and land is still eligible for enrollment if it is in MFL or CRP programs.