Grassley Asks USDA to Clarify Eligibility for Livestock Disaster Program
WASHINGTON – Senator Chuck Grassley is asking the U.S. Department of Agriculture to clarify for producers the eligibility requirements for application to the Livestock Forage Disaster Program.
Grassley wrote in a letter to Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack that he had heard from concerned farmers who were frustrated with the program. According to Iowans who Grassley has heard from, there have been conflicting reports of county eligibility by different Farm Service Agency offices, and questions about certifiable acres.
“Some simple direction from USDA and communication within FSA can put to rest the concerns that farmers may have,” Grassley said.
Here’s a copy of the text of Grassley’s letter. A signed copy can be found here.
May 20, 2014
The Honorable Tom Vilsack
U.S. Department of Agriculture
1400 Independence Ave., SW
Washington, D.C. 20250
Dear Secretary Vilsack:
The Agricultural Act of 2014 made the Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP) retroactive to
October 1, 2011. I am pleased that USDA has made the implementation of this program a top priority. Certainly, producers who are still suffering from financial losses that occurred over two years ago need assistance.
Recently, concerned farmers have reached out to my office frustrated with the acreage determinations for haying and grazing that are required for the LFP program. Additionally, there have been conflicting reports of county eligibility based on disaster designations from 2012. In an effort to clear up the confusion with this program, please provide answers to the following questions:
1) What counties in Iowa are eligible for the Livestock Forage Disaster Program for 2012 and 2013?
2) What documentation is required from producers for losses that were incurred in 2012 and 2013?
3) Are acres that are certified as haying and grazing ineligible for all payments, even partial payments?
Please number your responses in accordance with the question number you are answering. Should you have any questions regarding this letter, please contact Andrew Brandt on my staff.