USDA Declares Disaster in Maryland

The US Department of Agriculture has declared a state of natural disaster in 22 Maryland counties. The declaration is in response to a long drought which has destroyed crops and hurt agricultural production throughout the state. The disaster declaration makes Maryland farmers eligible to low interest loans from the USDA, the Farm Services Agency, and the Supplemental Revenue Assistance Payments Program.

Farmers have eight months from November 3, the date of the actual declaration, to apply for assistance, with each loan being processed based on production loss, available security, and an ability to repay the loan. “This designation recognizes crop losses of 30 percent or more in 22 counties,” Gov. Martin O’Malley said, “It is our hope that the designation will provide relief to the farmers who need it and help them prepare for the upcoming growing season.”

There are more than 12,000 farms in Maryland, and farming has been in important element of the Maryland economy. Requests from Maryland politicians, including Senator Barbara Mikulski and Congressman Steny Hoyer helped spur the prompt action by the USDA which, according to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, “Will provide help to hundreds of farmers who suffered significant production losses.”

Looking to start or reinvest in a farm or ranch? In the market for a farm loan? Farm Plus is here to help. Rates are at historic lows. Contact a representative at Farm Plus for more information on agriculture loans starting at 3.03%. Call 866-929-5585 or visit our website for more information.

Written by: Justin Ellison, Farm Plus Staff Writer