Oklahoma Farmers and Ranchers Have Options for Assistance

OKLAHOMA CITY – July 29, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — Farmers and ranchers affected by the May 5 to June 22 storms, tornadoes, flooding and straight-line winds could be eligible for assistance from several agencies.

The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management and the Federal Emergency Management Agency can assist survivors who are farmers and ranchers with some immediate needs including grants to pay for:
• Temporary housing and minor home repairs;
• Replacement of personal property, including clothing; and
• Serious immediate needs not covered by insurance.

The U.S. Small Business Administration offers low-interest loans to farmers and ranchers to rebuild or repair their primary homes and replace lost or damaged personal property.

To begin the application process, call FEMA at 800-621-3362, TTY 800-462-7585, or for those who use 711 or Video Relay Services (VRS), call 800-621-3362. Survivors may also apply online with any computer, smartphone or tablet at www.DisasterAssistance.gov

Other programs through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency include
emergency loans that may be used to:
• Restore or replace essential property;
• Pay all or part of production costs associated with the disaster;
• Pay essential family living expenses;
• Reorganize the farming operation;
• Refinance certain debts, excluding real estate;
• Provide to loan applicants up to 100 percent of their total actual production and/or physical losses. (Production losses must exceed 30 percent.) The maximum loan is $500,000.

The Non-Insured Crop Disaster Assistance Program provides financial assistance for non-insurable crops when low yields, loss of inventory, or prevented planting occur due to natural disasters, including grass for grazing. Eligible producers must have purchased coverage for 2015.

The Livestock Indemnity Program provides payments to eligible producers for livestock death losses in excess of normal mortality due to the disaster.

The Tree Assistance Program for nursery tree growers, vineyards and orchardists.

The Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program provides emergency relief for feed losses (including lost grazing days and baled forage) and/or water shortages due to a disaster.

The Emergency Conservation Program provides funding to rehabilitate land severely damaged by a natural disaster, including fencing.

To date, the FSA has identified dozens of disaster counties and contiguous counties where farmers and ranchers are eligible for FSA emergency loans. To get more information on FSA services, go online to the U.S. Department of Agriculture website at: www.fsa.usda.gov.

To locate your nearest FSA County office, visit: http://offices.usda.gov.

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