The Farm Service Agency (FSA) will continue to accept SURE applications for 2011 crop losses through June 7. Under the 2008 Farm Bill, SURE authorizes assistance to farmers and ranchers who suffered crop losses caused by natural disasters occurring through September 30, 2011. During 2011, all Texas counties received a Secretarial Disaster Designation, whether primary or contiguous, and producers are eligible to apply for SURE benefits if they experienced at least a 10 percent production loss that affects one crop of economic significance. To meet program eligibility requirements, producers must have obtained a policy or plan of insurance through the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation or obtained Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) coverage for all economically significant crops. Eligible farmers and ranchers who meet the definition of a socially disadvantaged, limited resource or beginning farmer or rancher do not have to meet this requirement. Forage crops intended for grazing are not eligible for SURE benefits. For more information on SURE program eligibility requirements contact your local FSA office or visit the website at http://www.fsa.usda.gov/sure.
After spring planting, producers should certify their 2013 acreage. Filing an accurate acreage report for all crops and land uses, including failed acreage and prevented planting acreage, can prevent the loss of benefits for a variety of programs. Failed acreage must be reported within 15 days of the disaster event and before disposition of the crop. Prevented planting must be reported no later than 15 days after the final planting date. Acreage reports are required for many Farm Service Agency programs.
DCP/ACRE SIGN-UP CONTINUES
The sign-up period for DCP and ACRE are still open. The DCP sign-up period will end on August 2; and the ACRE sign-up period will end on June 3. The 2013 DCP and ACRE program provisions are unchanged from 2012, except that all eligible participants in 2013 may choose to enroll in either DCP or ACRE for the 2013 crop year. This means that eligible producers who were enrolled in ACRE in 2012 may elect to enroll in DCP in 2013 or may re-enroll in ACRE in 2013. Likewise producers who were enrolled in DCP may opt for ACRE enrollment. Read more about DCP and ACRE or contact the FSA county office for more information, or an appointment to enroll.
ADJUSTED GROSS INCOME
USDA and the Internal Revenue Service have established an electronic information exchange process for verifying compliance with the adjusted gross income (AGI) provisions for farm programs. Written consent is required from each producer or payment recipient for the tax review process. No actual tax data will be included in the report that IRS sends to FSA. This ensures that payments are not issued to producers whose AGI exceeds certain limits. The limits set in the 2008 Farm Bill are $500,000 nonfarm average AGI for commodity and disaster programs; $750,000 farm average AGI for direct payments; and $1 million nonfarm average AGI for conservation programs. Participants in CCC programs subject to average AGI rules must submit form CCC-933 to their local FSA Office to avoid interruption of program benefits. This form may be obtained from local FSA and NRCS offices or online at: http://forms.sc.egov.usda.gov/eforms/mainservlet.
KARNES AND DEWITT COUNTY ARE ELIGIBLE FOR EMERGENCY LOANS
Karnes and DeWitt County were declared primary/contiguous disaster counties due to drought and heat using the new, streamlined Secretarial Disaster Designation process. Under this designation, producers with operations in any primary or contiguous county are eligible to apply for low interest emergency loans. The streamlined disaster designation process issues a drought disaster declaration when a county has experienced a drought intensity value of at least a D2 (severe drought) level for eight consecutive weeks based on the U.S. Drought Monitor during the crop year. Emergency loans help producers recover from production and physical losses due to drought, flooding and other natural disasters or quarantine. Producers have eight months from the date of the declaration to apply for emergency loan assistance. FSA will consider each loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. Producers can borrow up to 100 percent of actual production or physical losses, to a maximum amount of $500,000. Producers with operations in counties that did not receive a disaster designation could be eligible for emergency loan assistance if they suffered at least a 30 percent loss in crop production or a physical loss to livestock, livestock products, real estate or chattel property For more information about emergency loans, please contact your local FSA office or visit www.fsa.usda.gov.