USDA designates 43 counties as eligible for disaster aid


WASHINGTON — U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue has designated 43 New York counties, including Oneida, Herkimer and Lewis, as primary natural disaster areas, meaning producers who suffered losses due to recent disaster events may be eligible for U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency emergency loans.

Emergency loans can be used to meet various recovery needs including the replacement of essential items such as equipment or livestock, reorganization of a farming operation or the refinance of certain debts.

The designation is based on excessive rain since April 1 in certain counties, including Oneida County.

Also eligible are producers in contiguous counties, including Madison and Lewis counties.

The deadline to apply for these emergency loans is Sept. 29, 2020. FSA will review the loans based on the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability.

FSA has a variety of additional programs to help farmers recover from the impacts of this disaster. FSA programs that do not require a disaster declaration include: Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program; Emergency Conservation Program; Livestock Forage Disaster Program; Livestock Indemnity Program; Operating and Farm Ownership Loans; and the Tree Assistance Program.

Farmers may contact their local USDA service center for further information on eligibility requirements and application procedures for these and other programs. Additional information is also available online at


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