U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) in Austin and Washington counties announced that ranchers and livestock producers may be eligible for assistance from the Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP) for grazing losses incurred in 2019.
According to County Executive Director Steven Pawelek, “Austin and Washington counties recently met qualifying drought ratings that ‘trigger’ eligibility for the Livestock Forage Disaster Program on full season improved pasture, full season mixed forage pasture, native pasture and sorghum forage.”
LFP provides compensation to livestock producers who have suffered grazing losses due to drought. Qualifying drought ratings are determined using the U.S. Drought Monitor located at droughtmonitor.unl.edu.
Pawelek said eligible livestock include alpacas, beef cattle, buffalo/bison, beefalo, dairy cattle, deer, elk, emus, equine, goats, llamas, reindeer or sheep that have been or would have been grazing the eligible grazing land or pastureland during the normal grazing period.
An application for payment and supporting documentation are required. Producers must also file an acceptable crop acreage report by the applicable deadline(s). To expedite applications, producers who experienced losses in 2019 are encouraged to collect records documenting their losses. Supporting documents may include information related to grazing leases or federal grazing permits, contract grower agreements and more. Applications for 2019 losses will be accepted through Jan. 30.
“We encourage producers to contact our office for an appointment and to learn what records are required to apply for assistance,” said Pawelek.
For more information, contact the Austin/Washington FSA office at 979-865-3138. Information can also be obtained online at farmers.gov/recover.