Posted on January 13, 2005
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Bill Frist (R-TN) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) today applauded the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for naming three Tennessee counties as eligible for Farm Service Agency (FSA) emergency loan assistance following severe weather from May 1 - July 31, 2004 and during Hurricane Ivan from September 13 - September 20, 2004. Hardeman, Hardin and McNairy counties have been designated contiguous natural disaster areas by the USDA after reviewing damage assessment reports for Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. "This assistance is critical to those farm families still struggling from last year's severe weather," said Frist. "I'm pleased that Hardeman, Hardin and McNairy counties have received this designation so that we can help those farmers who suffered damage." "This is good news for these West Tennessee farmers who suffered damage and loss as a result of the severe weather that continued throughout the summer and fall," said Alexander. "We appreciate this assistance from the Department of Agriculture." "Recovering from last year's severe storm damage has been a heavy burden for many of our West Tennessee farm families, but this assistance will help speed up the rebuilding process," said Blackburn. "We are pleased that the Department of Agriculture will be providing this emergency support to our Hardeman, Hardin, and McNairy County farmers." This designation makes farm operators in these counties eligible to be considered for low-interest emergency loans from FSA, provided eligibility requirements are met. FSA will consider each application on its own merit by taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. Farmers are encouraged to contact local FSA offices for further information.