USDA Updates Phase One Emergency Relief Program, More Applications Being Mailed

by Colter Brown

The USDA announced another phase of assistance will be forthcoming to commodity and specialty crop producers impacted by natural disasters in 2020 and 2021. Over 18,000 producers will soon be mailed new or updated pre-filled disaster applications to offset eligible crop losses. About $6.4 billion has already reached 165,000 producers through the Farm Service Agency’s Emergency Relief Program.

“We knew when we announced ERP in May that we would have additional applications to send near the end of the summer as we received new information and found producers left out of the first data set we used,” says USDA Undersecretary for Farm Production and Conservation Robert Bonnie.

FSA will begin mailing pre-filled applications in late August to producers who have potentially eligible losses and:

Received crop insurance indemnities for qualifying 2020 and 2021 disaster events after May 2, 2022.

Received crop insurance indemnities associated with Nursery, Supplemental Coverage Option (SCO), Stacked Income Protection Plan (STAX), Enhanced Coverage Option (ECO) and Margin Protection (MP) policies.

New primary policyholders not included in the initial insured producer Phase 1 mailing from May 25, 2022, because their claim records had not been filled.

Certain 2020 prevent plant losses related to qualifying 2020 disaster events that had only been recorded in crop insurance records as related to 2019 adverse weather events and, as such, were not previously provided in applications sent earlier this year.

New Substantial Beneficial Interest (SBI) records, including SBIs where tax identification numbers were corrected.

In addition, on Aug. 18, 2022, USDA published a technical correction to the Notice of Funds Availability for ERP and ELRP to clarify how income from the sale of farm equipment and the provision of production inputs and services to farmers, ranchers, foresters, and farm operations are to be considered in the calculation of average adjusted gross farm income. Producers whose average adjusted gross farm income is at least 75% of the producer’s the average Adjusted Gross Income can gain access to a higher payment limitation.

Producers are expected to receive assistance direct deposited into their bank account within three business days after they sign and return the pre-filled application to the FSA county office and the county office enters the application into the system.

FSA will mail those pre-filled applications in late August to producers who have potentially eligible losses. Bonnie says he’s proud of his team’s continued efforts to help producers who need the assistance. Contact your local FSA office for additional information on eligibility requirements.



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