Home Indiana Agriculture News USDA Designates Additional Fourteen Counties in Indiana as Primary Disaster Areas

USDA Designates Additional Fourteen Counties in Indiana as Primary Disaster Areas

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Julia A. Wickard, State Executive Director of USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) in Indiana announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has designated an additional 14 counties to the original 36 counties in Indiana as primary natural disaster areas due to losses caused by extreme drought.  The 14 new counties are indicated with an asterisk:

 

Allen *Bartholomew *Brown Carroll Cass
*Clay Crawford Daviess DeKalb Dubois
Elkhart Fulton Gibson Grant Greene
*Hamilton *Hancock *Hendricks Howard Huntington
*Johnson Knox Kosciusko LaGrange Lawrence
*Marion Marshall Martin Miami *Monroe
*Morgan Noble Orange *Owen *Parke
Perry Pike Posey Pulaski *Putnam
St. Joseph *Shelby Spencer Steuben Sullivan
Vanderburgh Wabash Warrick Wells Whitley

 

“Indiana FSA and its employees are committed to helping farmers navigate the multitude of programs that may be available in eligible counties,” said Wickard.  “The Summer of 2012 will not be long forgotten by those producers and their families that were negatively impacted by severe dry weather. USDA is here to assist.”

 

Eleven additional counties to the original 19 counties also qualify for natural disaster assistance because their counties are contiguous to the designated counties. The 11 new counties are indicated with an asterisk:

 

Adams Blackford *Boone Clay Clinton
*Decatur Delaware *Fountain *Greene Harrison
*Henry Jackson Jasper Jay *Jennings
LaPorte *Lawrence Madison Monroe *Montgomery
Owen *Rush Starke *Sullivan Tippecanoe
Tipton *Vermillion Vigo Washington White

 

All counties listed above were designated natural disaster areas on July 12, 2012, making all qualified farm operators in the designated areas eligible for low interest emergency (EM) loans from FSA, provided eligibility requirements are met.  Farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration 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 adversity.

 

Recent changes in the disaster program will provide faster and more flexible assistance to farmers devastated by natural disasters.  There are three significant improvements related to Secretarial disaster designations: a final rule that simplifies the process for Secretarial disaster designations and will result in a 40 percent reduction in processing time for most counties affected by disasters; a reduced interest rate for emergency loans that effectively lowers the current rate from 3.75 percent to 2.25 percent; and a payment reduction on Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) lands qualified for emergency haying and grazing in 2012, from 25 to 10 percent.

 

USDA encourages all farmers to contact their crop insurance companies and local FSA offices, as applicable, to report damages to crops or livestock loss.  In addition, USDA reminds livestock producers to keep thorough records of losses, including additional expenses for such things as feed purchased due to lost supplies.  Additional resources to help farmers deal with drought may be found at http://www.usda.gov/disaster.

 

Source: Indiana  FSA