Assistance to Producers in Surrounding States
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has designated Calhoun, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Leon, Madison and Washington counties in Florida as primary natural disaster areas due to losses and damages caused by Hurricane Irma that occurred from Sept. 9, 2017, through Sept. 12, 2017.
Farmers and ranchers in the contiguous counties of Bay, Gadsden, Gulf, Hamilton, Lafayette, Liberty, Suwannee, Taylor, Wakulla and Walton in Florida also qualify for natural disaster assistance.
Farmers and ranchers in the contiguous counties of Geneva and Houston in Alabama, and the contiguous counties of Brooks, Grady, Lowndes, Seminole and Thomas in Georgia also qualify for natural disaster assistance.
Qualified farm operators in the designated areas are eligible for FSA’s emergency (EM) loans, provided eligibility requirements are met. Farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration of Feb. 2, 2018, to apply for loans to help cover part of their actual losses. FSA will consider each loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. FSA has a variety of programs, in addition to the EM loan program, to help eligible farmers recover from the impacts of the drought.
Other FSA programs that can provide assistance, but do not require a disaster declaration, include: Operating and Farm Ownership Loans; the Emergency Conservation Program; Livestock Forage Disaster Program; Livestock Indemnity Program; Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program; and the Tree Assistance Program. Interested farmers may contact their local USDA service centers for further information on eligibility requirements and application procedures for these and other programs. Additional information is also available online at http://disaster.fsa.usda.gov.