April 21, 2014

Many Wisconsin farmers will qualify for aid

Farmers in all but six Wisconsin counties will be eligible for low-interest emergency loans, as the result of two new disaster declarations from the USDA. The agency has identified 31 counties as “primary natural disaster areas,” after a warm spring caused crops to start growing prematurely – only to die when a wave of frost and freezing temperatures hit afterward.

Kewaunee County was also declared a disaster area because of drought conditions from May through early August. Brown, Calumet, and Sheboygan were designated for both reasons.

All of the counties surrounding the primary areas are eligible for the same disaster relief, which means that only six are not covered. Those six are Crawford, Door, Grant, Lafayette, Racine, and Richland counties.

The USDA’s Farm Service Agency will handle the disaster loans. Eligible farmers have eight months to apply for loans that will help cover part of their actual losses.