8 Idaho counties to receive federal disaster aid
USDA has designated eight Idaho counties as primary natural disaster areas due to damages caused by excessive rain, flash flooding and hail last summer.
The disaster period occurred from July 25 to Sept. 1.
Counties in Idaho designated for USDA special programs because of the losses are Bingham, Bonneville, Clark, Minidoka, Blaine, Cassia, Jefferson and Power.
“Our hearts go out to those Idaho farmers affected by recent natural disasters,” says USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack. “President Obama and I are committed to ensuring that agriculture remains a bright spot in our nation’s economy by sustaining the successes of America’s farmers, ranchers and rural communities through these difficult times.
“We’re also telling Idaho producers that USDA stands with you and your communities when severe weather and natural disasters threaten your livelihood.”
Contiguous counties affected
Farmers in the following counties in Idaho also qualify for natural disaster assistance because their counties are contiguous. They include Bannock, Butte, Camas, Caribou, Custer, Elmore, Fremont, Jerome, Lemhi, Lincoln, Madison, Oneida, Teton and Twin Falls.
Farmers and ranchers in the following counties in neighboring states also qualify for natural disaster assistance because their counties are contiguous. They are Beaverhead, Mont.; Elko, Nev.; Box Elder, Utah; and Lincoln and Teton,Wyo.
All of the counties listed above were designated natural disaster areas, meaning farm operators are eligible for low-interest emergency loans from USDA’s Farm Service Agency, provided requirements are met.
Farmers in eligible counties have eight months form Oct. 1 to apply for loans to help cover part of their actual losses. FSA considers applicants on individual merits, taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability.
FSA has a number of programs that the qualifying producers may use, in addition to the emergency loans system — a program that provides loans to producers impacted by natural disasters to help recover production and physical losses on the operation.
Additional programs for producers affected by the natural disasters in Nevada counties and contiguous areas include:
• Emergency Conservation Program
• Livestock Forage Disaster Program
• Livestock Indemnity Program
• Emergency Assistance for Livestock Program
• Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program
• Tree Assistance Program
The Livestock Forage Program provides compensation to producers who lost grazing areas. The Livestock Indemnity Program provides benefits to producers who have lost livestock due to natural disasters, with the number of killed cattle in excess of the normal rate of mortality on the ranch.
Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program provisions cover excessive losses due to weather conditions.
A separate tree program specifically for orchard losses under the Tree Assistance Program covers commercial plantings, including nursery stock, to pay for replanting or rehabilitation of affected trees and bush and vine crops.
The site provides a menu of maps that show all federal designations in the nation, viewed by clicking on the category under “Disaster designation information” on the website.
This article published in the December, 2014 edition of WESTERN FARMER-STOCKMAN.
All rights reserved. Copyright Farm Progress Cos. 2014.