Crop loss: Area counties declared natural disaster areas

Three local counties are among the 14 in Ohio that the United States Department of Agriculture said are primary natural disaster areas.

Champaign, Clark and Miami counties were added to a growing list of designated primary natural disaster areas, which means farmers in those counties can apply for disaster loans. Farmers are eligible only if they suffered a 30% loss in crop production or a physical loss of livestock, livestock products and real estate.

Farmers must also have acceptable credit history, and be unable to get credit from commercial sources. Collateral is required.

Fourteen counties were designated primary Friday, according to a statement from the USDA. That’s added to the seven designated primary disaster areas earlier this year.

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Adams, Belmont, Guernsey, Highland, Madison, Monroe, Noble, Portage, Stark, Summit, Trumbull, Butler, Hamilton, Knox, Warren, Defiance, Fayette and Logan counties are also among the primary disaster areas because of excessive rain and flooding ranging from October 2018 through September.

Producers who had losses because of the excessive rain and flooding may be eligible for USDA emergency loans. The contiguous counties designated as secondary natural disaster areas include Montgomery, Darke, Greene, Ashtabula, Brown, Carroll, Clinton, Columbiana, Coshocton, Cuyahoga, Fayette, Franklin, Geauga, Harrison, Holmes, Jefferson, Logan, Mahoning, Medina, Morgan, Muskingum, Pickaway, Pike, Ross, Scioto, Shelby, Tuscarawas, Union, Washington and Wayne.

Farmers in those counties are also eligible to apply for the loans, which will cover the actual cost of production loss of up to $500,000.

Interest rates change, but are currently at 3.5 %, a higher rate than other USDA loan types.

The deadline to apply is June 3, 2020. The Farm Services Administration will review the loans based on the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability, according to the statement.


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