Area farmers reminded loan help available

Published 5:29 pm Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Local farmers are reminded that “emergency loans for farmers, ranchers and operators are available through Lincoln County Office of the Farm Service Agency,” said A. Rodney Johnson, FSA farm loan manager.

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack on July 31 declared a major disaster in Mississippi caused by a freeze that occurred from March 25 through March 29, 2013.

As a result, Lincoln County has been designated a primary natural disaster area eligible for Federal Disaster assistance pursuant to Section 321 (a) of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act, Johnson said.

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Applications for assistance in the disaster-stricken county will be accepted by FSA through March 31, 2014.

Farmers qualifying for emergency loans may borrow up to 100 percent of their actual production loss or the amount needed to restore their operation to its pre-disaster condition, whichever is less.

The new emergency loan and outstanding principal balance of any existing emergency loan owed by the applicant or any individual member of an entity cannot exceed $500,000.

FSA emergency loans cover losses from designated disasters and are made to qualified farmers who cannot obtain credit from other lenders in the local area.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in all of its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex, marital status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, political beliefs, genetic information, reprisal, or because all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assistance program. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.)

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Stop 9410, Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call toll-free at (866) 632-9992 (English) or (800) 877-8339 (TDD) or (866) 377-8642 (English Federal-relay) or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish Federal-relay). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.