Relief Available for Fourteenth DistrictWednesday August 01, 2012
WASHINGTON, D.C.- U.S. Representative Randy Hultgren (IL-14) today has learned that the counties of Lee and Whiteside have received agricultural disaster designations and farmers in these areas will be eligible for federal assistance.
As a result, benefits will also be available for the contiguous counties of Bureau, DeKalb, Henry and Kendall.Today’s announcement leaves Cook, DuPage, Kane and Will as the only Illinois counties not yet designated a primary or contiguous disaster area.
On July 24, Congressman Hultgren and other Illinois legislators sent a letter to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack asking for the expanded designations for the state.
More information about applying for benefits can be found at www.fsa.udsa.gov.
The House of Representatives is also expected to consider House Resolution (H.R. 6233), a disaster assistance bill, on Thursday. The bill would reauthorize disaster assistance programs that expired at the end of fiscal year 2011 and is paid for with conservation program offsets consistent with levels previously established by enacted appropriations.
In July, the House Agriculture Committee approved a five-year Farm Bill which included livestock disaster assistance and important improvements to crop insurance to help producers get through a drought.
“Since the Farm Bill hasn’t passed the full House yet, I believe it’s absolutely the right thing to do to reauthorize these drought assistance programs,” said Rep. Hultgren.
“I still want to see a five year Farm Bill passed to provide our nation’s agricultural producers with some certainty and thus, the ability to plan, and I’m going to keep pushing my colleagues for that. In the meantime, I applaud Secretary Vilsack for responding to our request.”
Thursday is expected to be the last day of session before the August recess, although House leadership has stated that the House will return to work in August if the Senate votes to stop all of the impending tax hikes and defense cuts.
For an up-to-date map of 2012 Drought Secretarial Designations across the country, visit: http://www.usda.gov/documents/usda-drought-fast-track-designations-080112.pdf.