COLUMBUS – The USDA has designated 56 counties in Ohio as primary agricultural natural disaster areas, making farmers in the counties eligible for low-interest emergency loans from USDA’s Farm Service Agency.
All counties listed were designated natural disaster areas July 20.
CRP grazing. In a separate announcement, the USDA approved Adams, Brown, Highland, Muskingum, Morgan, Pickaway and Ross counties for emergency CRP ground haying and grazing.
All Ohio counties are eligible for emergency haying and grazing of CRP acres. Only livestock producers within the approved seven counties can purchase hay or grazing on eligible CRP acreage.
Basically it means any CRP participant can let producers from the seven approved counties to come in and hay or graze their acreage, according to John Stevenson, state executive director for Ohio’s Farm Service Agency.
Participants must have prior approval from county FSA offices before haying or grazing CRP acres.
Qualification. To qualify for the low-interest loans, farmers must be unable to obtain credit from commercial sources. Farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration to apply for loans to help cover part or all 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.
Other programs. USDA has also made other programs available to assist farmers, including the Emergency Conservation Program, Federal Crop Insurance and the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program.
Interested farmers should contact their local FSA county office for information.
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