Abraham announces parishes eligible for USDA assistance due to drought
WASHINGTON – Congressman Ralph Abraham, M.D., R-Alto, announced Wednesday, Sept. 16, that a number of Louisiana parishes have been declared natural disaster areas by the United Sates Department of Agriculture due to drought.
The drought declaration makes farmers in those parishes eligible for assistance, including low-interest emergency loans, from the Farm Service Agency (FSA).
“This summer’s hot, dry weather will likely have an impact on crop production. I applaud the USDA for making these important designations that will help farmers offset any losses they might have incurred due to the drought,” Dr. Abraham said.
Ten parishes received designations as primary natural disaster areas due to draught, including the 5th District parishes of Caldwell, Jackson, Lincoln, Morehouse, Ouachita and Richland. Other parishes receiving this designation include Bienville, Claiborne, Union and Webster.
The U.S. Drought Monitor determined that those parishes suffered from a severe, extreme or exceptional drought conditions for at eight or more consecutive weeks during the growing season.
Additionally, 10 parishes received designations as contiguous disaster areas and will also be eligible for FSA assistance. These include the 5th District parishes of Catahoula, East Carroll, Franklin, La Salle, Madison, West Carroll and Winn. Other parishes receiving this designation include Bossier, Natchitoches and Red River.
Farmers have eight months to apply for emergency loans. The FSA considers each emergency application on its own merits.
The USDA encourages farmers to contact their local FSA offices for more information. More information and online applications for disaster relief programs can be found online at https://www.fsa.usda.gov/programs-and-services/disaster-assistance-program/index.
Dr. Abraham is a member of the House Agriculture Committee.