September 23, 2011

State of Alabama
Press Release: Agriculture and Industries, Department of

USDA Secretary Vilsack Declares Drought Disaster in 21 South Alabama Counties


September 22, 2011

 MONTGOMERY, Alabama . . . U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has declared a drought disaster in 21 counties in South Alabama enabling farmers there to apply for low interest federal loans and grants.


"Thanks to Secretary Vilsack and Governor Robert Bentley for coming to the aid of farmers who suffered significant losses due to this summer's record drought," Commissioner John McMillan said.


On June 30, Governor Bentley requested drought disaster aid as the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Drought Monitor reported exceptional drought had developed in much of the southern half of Alabama. Rains have been infrequent throughout much of this region during the past six months.


Eleven counties are in the primary disaster region, including: Barbour, Russell, Houston, Covington, Henry, Dale, Geneva, Escambia, Mobile, Baldwin and Coffee. An additional 10 counties were designated continguous counties, also eligible for drought aid, including: Butler, Crenshaw, Lee, Pike, Washington, Bullock, Macon, Monroe, Conecuh and Clarke.


Farmers have eight months to qualify for benefits under the Farm Service Agency (FSA) Loan Program and the Supplemental Revenue Assistance Program.  Local FSA offices can provide farmers with additional information and assistance.


Attached is a copy of Secretary Vilsack's letter.           


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Brett C. Hall

Deputy Commissioner

Alabama Department of Agriculture & Industries

1445 Federal Drive

Montgomery, Alabama  36107


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