- Associated Press - Saturday, May 16, 2015

FARMERVILLE, La. (AP) - Federal agriculture officials say farmers in Union Parish and the surrounding area are eligible for natural disaster aid following damage caused by tornadoes, hail, high winds and lightning on April 22.

The News-Star reports (https://tnsne.ws/1JPkq44 ) that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Louisiana Farm Service Agency state executive director Craig A. McCain declared Union Parish a primary natural disaster area.

This designation also means farmers and ranchers in Claiborne, Lincoln, Morehouse and Ouachita parishes may also qualify for natural disaster aid.

Charles E. Hixon III, the FSA senior farm loan officer who inspected the storm’s aftermath, said the primary damage in the Union parish disaster was to poultry, cattle and hay farms.

“There were three poultry houses completely destroyed,” he said. “One poultry house suffered undetermined damage. There was also damage to approximately 18 other agricultural structures. This would include hay barns, litter barns, composters and other poultry houses.”

All the parishes listed were designated natural disaster areas on May 12, making qualified farm operators in the designated areas eligible for low interest emergency loans from USDA’s Farm Service Agency, provided eligibility requirements are met.

Farmers in eligible parishes have until Jan. 12 to apply for loans to help cover part of their physical losses.

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Information from: The News-Star, https://www.thenewsstar.com


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