Abraham announces parishes declared eligible for natural disaster assistance from USDA
WASHINGTON - Congressman Ralph Abraham, M.D., R-Alto, announced Wednesday that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has designated a number of parishes as primary natural disaster areas and contiguous natural disaster areas due to damage caused by heavy rains, heavy winds and flooding earlier this year.
The designation makes farm operators in those affected parishes eligible to be considered for certain assistance from the Farm Service Agency. This assistance includes FSA emergency loans, low-interest loans that will help farmers off-set the costs incurred from storm and flood damage.
“I applaud the USDA for making this important designation so that our farmers can begin the task of rebuilding and repairing their property. This spring’s storms and flooding affected farmers from throughout the state, and I’m glad the declaration is broad enough that people from across my district and the state can benefit,” Dr. Abraham said.
Twelve parishes were designated primary natural disaster areas, including the 5th District parishes of Avoyelles, East Feliciana, Franklin, Grant and Rapides. Other parishes with this designation included Bossier, Caddo, Iberville, Natchitoches, Pointe Coupee, Red River and West Baton Rouge.
A number of parishes were designated contiguous disaster parishes, including the 5th District parishes of Caldwell, Catahoula, Concordia, La Salle, Madison, Richland, St. Helena, St. Landry, Tensas, West Feliciana and Winn.
Other parishes designated as continuous disaster parishes include Allen, Ascension, Assumption, Bienville, De Soto, East Baton Rouge, Evangeline, Iberia, Sabine, St. Martin, Vernon and Webster.
Farmers in eligible parishes have eight months from the date of the disaster declaration (July 22) to apply for emergency loans. FSA considers each emergency loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of production losses on the farm and the security and repayment ability of the operator.
More information can be provided by local FSA offices. More information and online applications can be found using this link: https://www.fsa.usda.gov/programs-and-services/disaster-assistance-program/index.
Dr. Abraham is a member of the House Agriculture Committee.