Indiana Senator Joe Donnelly, who serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee, sent a letter today to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary of Agriculture Thomas Vilsack urging USDA to grant a disaster declaration for an additional 8 Indiana counties impacted by excessive rainfall. The USDA granted a disaster declaration for 53 of Indiana’s 92 counties earlier this month. Donnelly wrote the letter in support of the joint request from Indiana Governor Mike Pence and Lt. Governor Sue Ellspermann, along with Executive Director of Indiana’s Farm Service Agency Julia Wickard.
Donnelly wrote, “The extreme levels of rain have caused irreparable damage to planted fields and rendered others unplantable throughout the state… Hoosiers have appreciated your disaster declaration for the initial 53 of Indiana’s counties, and I would appreciate your immediate and favorable consideration of a disaster declaration for these additional counties so that resources can be made available to help deal with crops losses.”
Donnelly visited Merritt Farm in early July in Peru, Indiana, to get a first-hand view of the effect excess rain is having on crops and farmers and previously wrote a letter in support of the initial disaster declaration. Full text of the letter to Secretary Vilsack follows.
To see a PDF of the signed copy, click here.