Additional aid available for ag hurricane damage through NRCS
On Nov. 7, the Georgia office of the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announced additional assistance is being made available to Georgia farmers, ranchers and forestland owners who suffered damage to working lands due to Hurricane Michael.
This new signup for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) through NRCS can protect farmland from erosion, support disaster recovery and repair, and can help mitigate loss from exceptional storm events in the future. Deadline to apply is Dec. 14.
Agricultural producers and non-industrial forestland owners in the following 68 counties are eligible to apply: Appling, Atkinson, Baker, Ben Hill, Berrien, Bibb, Bleckley, Brooks, Bryan, Bulloch, Burke, Calhoun, Candler, Clay, Coffee, Colquitt, Columbia, Cook, Crisp, Decatur, Dodge, Dooly, Dougherty, Early, Effingham, Emanuel, Evans, Glascock, Grady, Houston, Irwin, Jeff Davis, Jefferson, Jenkins, Johnson, Lanier, Laurens, Lee, Lowndes, Macon, McDuffie, Miller, Mitchell, Montgomery, Peach, Pulaski, Randolph, Richmond, Schley, Screven, Seminole, Sumter, Tattnall, Telfair, Terrell, Thomas, Tift, Toombs, Treutlen, Turner, Twiggs, Warren, Washington, Webster, Wheeler, Wilcox, Wilkinson, and Worth. This does not apply to local governments or other entities.
Additionally, a previously announced emergency EQIP signup in Georgia to address animal mortality continues to hold priority in the hardest-hit areas. That signup is ongoing through Nov. 16, and includes a total of 20 counties. Counties that are currently eligible for the emergency EQIP signup are: Baker, Calhoun, Clay, Crisp, Decatur, Dougherty, Early, Grady, Laurens, Lee, Miller, Mitchell, Randolph, Seminole, Sumter, Terrell, Thomas, Tift, Turner, and Worth. If livestock producers who experience mass mortalities in these counties do not make the deadline for this sign up, they can still apply for the Dec. 14 signup.
Anyone who has questions about which EQIP signup(s) they may be eligible for should visit their local NRCS office to have questions answered and to apply for assistance.
Under these special signups, mortality and carcass disposal will be by burial, incineration or composting methods. NRCS recommends producers seeking assistance for any mass mortality event immediately notify the Georgia Department of Agriculture’s Animal Industry Division, if they haven’t already done so.
For more information from NRCS, contact your local USDA Service Center or visit the Georgia NRCS website at www.ga.nrcs.usda.gov. For more information on disaster assistance programs for farmers and ranchers available from USDA visit farmers.gov/recover.