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Farmers Urged to Report Snowstorm Damages to FSA
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 04/24/2018

Wisconsin farmers who suffered property or livestock losses from the recent snow storms are being encouraged to report those damages to the Farm Service Agency. The USDA issued a media release last week stating that the FSA offers disaster assistance and low-interest loan programs to producers in their recovery efforts following blizzards or other qualifying natural disasters.

"Many parts of Wisconsin received two feet or more of heavy, wet snow April 13-14," said State Ag Secretary Sheila Harsdorf. "It is critical that farmers document and report and damage to their local FSA office because they may be eligible for disaster assistance programs. If farmers haven't already contacted their insurers, they need to do that as well."

Assistance may be available to farmers who lost livestock, grazing land and fences. There are also safety net programs, including the Livestock Indemnity Program and the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish program, according to the agency.

In addition, the FSA uses loss reports to determine whether to seek a disaster designation from the USDA Secretary. A disaster designation makes farmers in the county eligible for low-interest loans if they cannot access private financing.

Harsdorf adds that farmers may also turn to the Wisconsin Farm Center if they need help with lender mediation or to get assistance in dealing with financial and emotional stress. The WFC hotline is 800-942-2474.

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