Steve Maurer, the State Executive Director for the USDA Ohio Farm Service Agency (FSA) reminds producers about the U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretarial designation on Sept. 5, 2012. All of Ohio’s counties were designated as primary or contiguous agricultural natural disaster areas due to drought and excessive heat that occurred from February 1, 2012 and continuing.
This gives all qualified farm operators in the designated areas the opportunity to file an application for low interest emergency (EM) loans from USDA’s 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.
USDA FSA has a variety of programs, in addition to the emergency loan program, to help eligible farmers recover from adversity. Other programs available to assist farmers include the Emergency Conservation Program, Federal Crop Insurance, and the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program.
Interested farmers may contact their local FSA county office for further information on eligibility requirements and application procedures for these and other programs.