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BREAKING: Williams and Fulton Counties Included in USDA Disaster Declaration

WASHINGTON, July 31, 2019 | Mikayla Hall (202-225-6405)

Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a second disaster declaration after excessive rainfall disrupted planting in Ohio and the Midwest. This new declaration now includes Williams and Fulton Counties, which were left off the initial declaration due to the USDA requiring additional time to review their application and data. 

Like the first one, this disaster declaration will allow for additional relief for impacted farmers including emergency low interest loans, deferred loan payments, and supplementary assistance. Farmers and producers can visit their location Farm Services Agency office to learn more about the disaster programs offered.

Regarding this update, Congressman Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green) released the following statement: 

“I’ve seen up close the devastation our excessive rainfall has had on Williams and Fulton Counties. Their inclusion in a disaster declaration was necessary to get resources to our farmers. Thank you to the USDA for the turnaround and their responsiveness to my concerns.“ 

Background: 

On Friday, July 26, the USDA issued a disaster declaration that included much of Latta’s district, with Paulding, Wood, and Wyandot counties as primary counties, and Defiance, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Lucas, Mercer, Ottawa, Putnam, and Van Wert counties as contiguous counties. Congressman Latta immediately followed up regarding Williams and Fulton Counties’ exclusion from the list. 

Congressman Latta has been in close contact with the USDA and Governor Mike DeWine’s office regarding farmers’ concerns about their crops. On June 13, he sent a letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue regarding the severe and unprecedented rainfall impacting farmers in Northwest and West Central Ohio. The letter urged Secretary Perdue to approve an agriculture disaster declaration should the agency receive a request for one from the state of Ohio. Governor DeWine sent a request letter to the USDA. On June 25, he followed up with a letter to USDA Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation Bill Northey asking for clarification on the assistance process to help ease the uncertainty farmers are facing. 
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