Emergency loan applications being accepted at FSA office
Kerry Craig | News-Telegram Assistant Editor

Applications for emergency farm loans to cover losses caused by the drought that began on April 1, 2006, and are continuing are now be accepted at Sulphur Springs Farm Service Agency office, according to Ellis Dicus in that office.

Hopkins, Delta, Wood and Rains counties were named as primary counties recently by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns. The designation makes producers in these counties eligible for loans to cover part of actual production losses and physical losses resulting from the drought. The same counties were also included in previous disaster determinations.

Farmers may be eligible for loans of up to 100 percent of their actual losses or the operating loan needed to continue the agricultural business, whichever is less, Dicus said.

"As a general rule, a farmer must have suffered at least a 30 percent loss of production to be eligible for an FSA emergency loan," Dicus said.

Farmers participating in the Federal Crop Insurance program will have to consider proceeds from those programs in determining their loss.

"Applications for loans under this emergency designation will be accepted until May 23, 2007, but farmers should apply as soon as possible," Dicus said. "Delays in applying could create backlogs in processing with possible delays into the new farming season."

The FSA office in Sulphur Springs is located on State Highway 19 (Hillcrest Drive) just north of State Highay 11 (Houston Street). Office hours are from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Call (903) 885-4433 for more information.

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