ATLANTA — United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack has issued a natural disaster declaration for five counties located in Southwest and Northeast Georgia following a sustained period of drought, adding to the fifteen Northwest Georgia Counties already declared primary natural disaster areas in recent weeks. Impacted counties include Decatur, Early, Miller, Seminole, and Union, which have sustained eight or more weeks of severe, extreme, or exceptional drought conditions. This declaration allows USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) to extend essential emergency credit to Georgia farmers affected by these weather events.
“For the first time in four years, Georgia has been impacted by extreme drought conditions – negatively impacting our state’s #1 industry and our farmer’s livelihoods,” said Agriculture Commissioner Tyler Harper. “Again, I want to thank Secretary Vilsack for moving quickly to make much needed relief available to Georgia farmers and producers, and we’ll continue to do everything possible to assist those impacted by the drought so they can bounce back stronger than before.”
USDA FSA loans can be used to meet various recovery requirements, including replacing essential items such as farm equipment or livestock, reorganizing a farming operation, or refinancing specific loans. FSA reviews all loans based on the extent of losses, security available, and repayment ability, and Georgia farmers and producers in the counties below are eligible to apply.
Application Deadline: July 13, 2024
Primary Counties Eligible:
Decatur, Early, Miller, Seminole, Union
Contiguous Counties Also Eligible:
Baker, Calhoun, Clay, Fannin, Grady, Lumpkin, Mitchell, Towns, White
More USDA Resources
On farmers.gov, the Disaster Assistance Discovery Tool, Disaster Assistance-at-a-Glance fact sheet, and Loan Assistance Tool can help you determine program or loan options. To file a Notice of Loss or to ask questions about available programs, contact your local USDA Service Center.
–Matthew Agvent, Georgia Department of Agriculture