Hutchinson seeking aid for farmers after $50 million in crop damages

Disaster Declaration
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - On Sept. 16, Governor Asa Hutchinson requested that some northeast Arkansas counties be declared disaster areas.

According to Hutchinson, nearly $50 million worth of damages were done to crops in the state.

Region 8 News spoke with Rickey Stewart, the district director at the local farm service agency, about the declaration and how farmers might be responding.

Stewart mentioned that if the Secretary of Agriculture approves Hutchinson's request, a low-interest loan will be available to farmers who have experienced a 30% loss in production in comparison to their normal yield.

Unfortunately, this just means one more loan to pay off.

"They're not necessarily looking for a loan, for some it is a good thing, but not necessarily always a good thing," said Stewart. "Because it is a loss in income and they're looking for something to replace that loss in income."

Stewart mentioned that if the disaster declaration is made, the Farm Service Agency will notify farmers through their newsletter.

Farmers can then come in and file for the loan, if they qualify.

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