The U.S. Department of Agriculture has designated specific counties as ‘Primary Disaster Areas’ due to the losses and destruction brought by the recent drought in these areas. Farmers and ranchers in these counties and those counties that are contiguous may qualify for natural disaster assistance.
These drought-stricken counties were identified on Sept. 11, 2017, as primary disaster areas by USDA, according to the report by the Fence Post.
Counties in Wyoming, Montana considered as Primary Disaster Areas
In the State of Wyoming, Campbell and Crook counties have been designated as primary natural disasters.
The counties Converse, Johnson, Sheridan, and Weston in the same state are contiguous, thus also qualifying for the said assistance from the USDA. In the same manner, counties of Carter and Powder River in Montana, and the counties of Butte and Lawrence in South Dakota are contiguous. This makes them qualified for the assistance as well.
Also identified by the USDA as Primary Disaster Areas the counties of Big Horn, Cascade, Golden Valley, Judith Basin, Liberty and Wheatland in Montana.
Contiguous to these counties are Carbon, Chouteau, Lewis and Clark, Fergus, Hill, Musselshell, Meagher, Pondera, Powder River, Rosebud, Stillwater, Sweet Grass, Teton, Treasure, Toole, and Yellowstone. These counties in Montana are also qualified for natural disaster assistance
Likewise, the Big Horn and Sheridan Counties in Wyoming are also qualified for the said assistance because they are contiguous to the primary disaster areas.
Farmers and Ranchers in Primary Disaster Areas and Contiguous Counties May Qualify for Emergency Loans
Qualified farm operators located in the counties mentioned above are eligible for Farm Service Administration’s ( FSA) Emergency (EM) Loans.
For farmers and ranchers in these areas, they would need to submit their EM loan applications within eight months from the date of the declaration. The funds may help cover part of the actual losses. The USDA, through the FSA, will review each loan application to determine the degree of losses and damages, taking into consideration the available security and the applicant’s ability to repay. The be eligible, farmer and rancher applicants will need to meet the requirements set by the USDA.
These emergency farm loans can be used to replace or restore essential properties, cover basic family living expenses, settle all or a portion of the production costs for the disaster year, as well as refinance some debts.
Through an emergency loan, a qualified borrower can loan up to a maximum of $500,000 or up to 100 percent of the actual physical or production losses.
Applying for an EM Loan
To apply for an emergency loan, you may contact the USDA Service Center or FSA County Office in your area. You must submit a duly accomplished FSA-2001 Form, Request for Direct Loan Assistance and all the necessary documents required.
Aside from the Emergency Farm Loan, there are also many other assistance programs that the FSA offers to farmers and ranchers seeking for help. From ownership loans to farm operation financing, you may find a myriad of lending programs that may provide you the aid you need.
To know more about the different options, visit their online portal at www.fsa.usda.gov. You may also speak with a lender who finances USDA guaranteed loans. They can give you additional information about USDA loans.Click to See the Latest Mortgage Rates»