Source: USDA Farm Service Agency
Applications for the Livestock Indemnity Program and the Livestock Forage Disaster Program, restored by the 2014 Farm Bill resumed in April 2014, after having expired on Sept. 30, 2011. To date, more than 556,000 applications have been approved to assist farmers and ranchers in recovering from nearly three years of natural disasters.
The Livestock Indemnity Program provides financial assistance to eligible producers for livestock deaths. Losses can be caused by adverse weather, extreme temperatures, disease, or wildfires, or due to attacks by animals reintroduced into the wild by the federal government or protected by federal law, including wolves and avian predators.
The Livestock Forage Disaster Program provides compensation to livestock producers that have suffered grazing losses due to drought or fire. Qualifying droughts are based on U.S Drought Monitor severity ratings, and qualifying fires are those occurring on rangeland managed by a federal agency and normally permitted for grazing.
“I encourage producers who have experienced grazing or livestock death losses to contact their local FSA office as soon as possible to schedule an appointment if they have not signed up for livestock disaster assistance benefits,” said Canales.
To expedite applications, all producers who experienced losses are encouraged to collect records documenting their losses. Supporting documents may include livestock birth records, purchase and transportation receipts, photos and ownership records showing the number and type of livestock lost, documents listing the gallons of water transported to livestock during drought, information related to grazing land, grazing leases or federal grazing permits, and more.
Local FSA county offices can provide additional information on the types of records producers will need to apply for assistance. Producers are encouraged to contact their county office ahead of time to schedule an appointment. Producers who already have appointments don’t need to take any additional action to meet the deadline. FSA offices can be found at offices.usda.gov. To learn more about these FSA disaster programs, visit disaster.fsa.usda.gov.
These programs were made possible through the 2014 Farm Bill, which builds on historic economic gains in rural America over the past five years, while achieving meaningful reform and billions of dollars in savings for the taxpayer. Since enactment, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has made significant progress to implement each provision of this critical legislation, including providing disaster relief to farmers and ranchers; strengthening risk management tools; expanding access to rural credit; funding critical research; establishing innovative public-private conservation partnerships; developing new markets for rural-made products; and investing in infrastructure, housing and community facilities to help improve quality of life in rural America. For more information, visit www.usda.gov/farmbill.