Polk County, Florida, March 10, 2023 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack yesterday visited a citrus grove in Polk County, Florida to survey the affect of Hurricane Ian and meet with producers impacted by the storm. Through the go to, the Secretary highlighted efforts by the united statesDepartment of Agriculture (USDA) to assist Florida producers rebuild their operations and enhance their backside traces as they recuperate from the devastating affect of hurricanes.
“We all know how devastating storms may be to the operations of farmers and ranchers,” mentioned Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “USDA is dedicated to serving to producers impacted by extreme climate recuperate and can use all of the instruments we’ve to make sure that producers can rebuild and proceed to do what they do finest by feeding our nation and the world.”
USDA’s Catastrophe Restoration Efforts in Florida
USDA is working by way of almost 2,500 requests for help following Hurricane Ian. The Division has held over 16 outreach occasions particularly for Hurricane Ian catastrophe help packages to help producers and organizations.
The U.S. Division of Agriculture (USDA) has supplied help to producers by way of the Danger Administration Company (RMA) and Pure Useful resource Conservation Service. The Farm Service Company (FSA) has licensed coverage exceptions for 3 key catastrophe help packages to assist Florida agricultural operations that had been considerably impacted by Hurricane Ian in 2022. These packages embody the Emergency Help for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program (ELAP), Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) and Tree Help Program (TAP).
Crop Insurance coverage
Florida producers obtained over $190 million in Federal crop insurance coverage funds because of Hurricane Ian with $134 million arriving inside weeks as a result of hurricane coverage, which routinely triggers a cost if a county qualifies primarily based on information from the Nationwide Hurricane Middle on the Nationwide Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. RMA manages the Federal Crop Insurance coverage Company (FCIC) to supply progressive crop insurance coverage merchandise, just like the hurricane coverage, to America’s farmers and ranchers.
Citrus producers have obtained nearly $79 million in indemnities for injury from Hurricane Ian. Claims are persevering with to be resolved as citrus harvest continues to be ongoing. Remaining manufacturing numbers are wanted to finalize claims.
Emergency Watershed Program
EWP gives technical and monetary help to assist native communities relieve imminent threats to life and property brought on by floods, fires, windstorms and different pure disasters that impair a watershed. Following Hurricane Ian, almost 300 websites have been recognized for EWP help and preliminary estimates exceed $50 million.
Environmental High quality Incentives Program Emergency Help
EQIP gives monetary and technical help to agricultural and forest producers to enhance or shield pure useful resource circumstances whereas additionally enhancing agricultural operations. NRCS can present funds, by way of conservation program contracts, for EQIP conservation practices to assist agricultural landowners and producers handle catastrophe associated useful resource issues on their land.
To expedite Hurricane Ian catastrophe restoration, NRCS supplied early begin waivers in EQIP emergency declaration counties, to permit graduation of key conservation practices previous to conservation program contract approval. By way of EQIP for Hurricane Ian, NRCS has already accredited over $10 million for greater than 400 functions.
Emergency Help for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program
ELAP gives help to homeowners of livestock, and producers of honeybees and farm-raised fish for feed and loss of life losses on account of an eligible pure catastrophe occasion. For ELAP, FSA will nonetheless settle for late-file acreage certifications for honeybees and aquaculture for 2022 with no price and no area inspection required.
Aquaculture and honeybee producers might want to present the native FSA county committee with proof that the fish, bees or hives existed previous to the qualifying pure catastrophe occasion, together with proof of feed buy, buy of inventory, and many others.
Livestock Indemnity Program
The discover of loss submitting date for LIP has been prolonged by way of March 30, 2023, and the deadline for functions for cost prolonged by way of Could 1, 2023. LIP gives advantages to livestock homeowners and contract growers who expertise livestock deaths in extra of regular mortality brought on by particular adversarial climate, illness or animal assaults.
Tree Help Program
TAP gives monetary cost-share help to qualifying orchardists and nursery tree growers to replant or, the place relevant, rehabilitate eligible timber, bushes, and vines misplaced by pure disasters.
For Florida citrus producers, the deadline to file a Discover of Loss with FSA has been prolonged from 60 calendar days as much as a further two-years on the timeframe to finish practices for citrus losses. A request for a follow extension should be made in writing (may be submitted by way of e mail) earlier than follow completion date.
On farmers.gov, the Disaster Assistance Discovery Tool, Disaster Assistance-at-a-Glance fact sheet (PDF, 1.4 MB) and Farm Loan Discovery Tool will help producers and landowners decide program or mortgage choices. For help with a crop insurance coverage declare, producers and landowners ought to contact their crop insurance agent. For FSA and NRCS packages, they need to contact their native USDA Service Center.
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