Ag Commissioner Steve Troxler: Iredell and Wilkes County Farmers now Eligible for Disaster Relief

Farmers in Iredell and Wilkes counties are now eligible to apply for disaster assistance from the Hurricane Florence Agricultural Disaster Program of 2018. The General Assembly re-opened the filing period for those two counties only. The deadline to apply is March 23.

 

  • Good news for farmers in Iredell and Wilkes counties that suffered damage from Hurricane Florence or Tropical Storm Michael. They are now eligible to apply for disaster assistance from the Hurricane Florence Agricultural Disaster Program of 2018.
  • The N.C. General Assembly approved legislation last week to re-open the filing period for those two counties specifically, and it was signed into law by Gov. Roy Cooper.
  • Only farmers from Iredell and Wilkes counties can submit applications through midnight Monday, March 23, for assistance.
  • The program will directly assist farmers who suffered losses to commodities planted, but not harvested before Sept. 13, and livestock
  • At the time the legislators approved $240 million in state disaster assistance, some counties had not received a presidential or secretarial disaster declaration.

 

  • If you are a farmer in Iredell or Wilkes counties, I encourage you to go online on our website at ncagr.gov and complete your application.
  • The process takes about 30 minutes per farm and assistance is available through the N.C. Cooperative Extension offices and the NCDA&CS disaster hotline at 1-866-645-9403.

 

  • As listeners know, we have been busy since the original application deadline closed, reviewing and approving applications for payment.

 

  • To date, we have distributed nearly $90 million in assistance and have completed around 90 percent of the more than 7,000 applications submitted.

 

  • We are still working on the applications and we ask farmers to be patient as we work through the remaining ones. Some applications are more complicated and some require follow ups with the growers, but I can assure you, we are working as quickly as possible to process all the applications.

 

  • I have received a lot of thankful phone calls and messages from farmers who have received payments.

 

  • I am grateful to legislators for unanimously approving this help for our farm families and rural communities.

 

  • This assistance in no way will make the losses whole, but hopefully the funds will provide a bridge to help some growers get back in the field in 2019.