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Published November 05, 2009, 10:15 AM

Emergency loans available for Grand Forks County farmers

Grand Forks County farmers have until June 7 to apply for Farm Service Agency emergency loans for weather-related losses April 1 to June 30, 2009.

By: Kim Deats, Agweek

Grand Forks County farmers who suffered physical and production losses because of excessive snow, excessive rain, flooding, flash flooding and unseasonably cool temperatures, including frost and freezes that occurred April 1 to June 30, may apply for Farm Service Agency Emergency Loans, said Brad Johnson, farm loan manager at the Grand Forks County FSA office.

Grand Forks County is eligible to make EM loans because it is bordering a county in Minnesota that was designated a major disaster area.

The time allowed to file loan applications is eight months. For Grand Forks County farmers, this means the deadline for applications to be filed is June 7, 2010.

Although the authority for EM processing has been given, all potential EM loan applicants must be aware that they will be unable to complete an application for loan processing until after all information for their farm operation pertaining to actual physical losses and production losses, disaster payments, to crop insurance benefits and to any other crop production compensation is available and can be documented.

Johnson says farmers who suffered a qualifying production loss of at least 30 percent from normal and are unable to get credit elsewhere may apply for reduced interest loans to cover up to 100 percent of their losses. The loans carry a 3.75 percent interest rate. To qualify for physical losses, there does not have to be a qualifying loss amount.

Farmers who think they are eligible may apply for assistance at the county office in Grand Forks or by phone at 701-772-0441, ext. 2.