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Signup underway for livestock disaster programs

By Teri Moss
County Executive Director

Natural disasters including droughts, floods and freezes have caused serious financial hardships for farmers and ranchers since the fall of 2011.
The new Farm Bill Disaster Programs will provide a much needed help to livestock producers. These disaster programs are retroactive to losses occurring since Oct. 1, 2011 until present time.
The Perkins County FSA began taking applications for several Livestock Disaster Programs on April 15, 2014. Nationally, these programs provide eligible producers compensation for losses of livestock and/or grazing in 2012 and 2013.
If you are or were a livestock producer in 2012 or 2013, please contact us at (308) 352-4747 to schedule an appointment and for additional information on what records to gather for documenting your losses.
The Livestock Forage Disaster Program provides assistance to eligible livestock producers that suffered grazing losses due to drought on native or improved pastureland during the normal grazing period. This program can provide substantial payments to eligible producers.
In Nebraska, the normal grazing period is 180 days from May 1 through Oct. 27.
Payments for drought are equal to 60 percent of the lesser of the monthly feed cost:
1. For all covered livestock owned or leased by the eligible livestock producer
2. Calculated by using the normal carrying capacity of the eligible grazing land of the eligible livestock producer.
The Livestock Indemnity Program offers payments to eligible producers that have lost livestock above normal mortality due to adverse weather. The payments are equal to 75 percent of the average fair market value of the type/class of livestock.
The normal mortality rates and the fair market value are determined at the national level. Eligible livestock producers must legally own or have possession of the livestock at the time of the loss.
Perkins County producers may apply for 2012 and 2013.
Another disaster program that will be available is the Emergency assistance for livestock, honey bees and farm raised fish.
Livestock that are not covered under LIP or LFP may qualify under ELAP.