Today I have three topics I would like to briefly talk about. They include your stored grain that is under loan, maintenance of your CRP land, and any claims of past discrimination in obtaining farm loans.
First, let’s discuss that grain in your bin that is under Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) loan. Since the stored grain serves as collateral for your loan, it cannot be removed from the bin, fed, trucked, or disposed of in any manner without prior FSA authorization or repayment. Your county FSA office staff may issue marketing release authorizations based on a telephone or in person request when you are ready to sell the grain. Removing the grain without authorization or repayment could result in a violation of the loan terms.
Violations are subject to monetary and administrative penalties such as repaying the loan at principal plus interest, liquidated damages, calling the loan, and denial of future farm-stored loans and loan deficiency payments. All commodity loans are subject to random spot check by FSA staff. Locking in a market loan repayment rate is not an authorization to move the grain – they are two different actions. If you are planning to move CCC loan grain, make sure you call your county FSA office staff before you open the bin door!
Secondly, I would like to remind those with land enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) that you are required to maintain those CRP acres according to your “Conservation Plan of Operations” document that you prepared with the assistance of the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). These CRP maintenance activities must be conducted outside the primary nesting season for wildlife and in accordance with your conservation plan. Ohio’s primary nesting season is March 1 through July 15th. Spot treatments to control noxious or invasive weeds may be allowed during the primary nesting season if you first make a request at your local FSA office and receive prior approval from your FSA County Committee.
And thirdly, we are still trying to close the chapter on old allegations that discrimination occurred at USDA in past decades when trying to obtain farm loans. The focus now is to resolve discrimination claims of Hispanic farmers and women farmers who assert that they were discriminated against with their farm loan application.
The current claims process offers a streamlined alternative to litigation and provides at least $1.33 billion in compensation, plus up to $160 million in farm debt relief, to eligible Hispanic and women farmers. Individuals who feel they have a valid claim may register to receive a claims package, or obtain more information by visiting the website www.farmerclaims.gov.
Or individuals can register to receive a claims package by calling the Farmer and Rancher Call Center at 1-888-508-4429. USDA cannot provide legal advice to potential claimants. Persons seeking legal advice may also contact a lawyer or other legal services provider.
That’s All for Now!