Federal relief is available for farmers in Morris, Sussex, Passaic and Warren counties, as they are among 14 New Jersey counties covered by a Natural Disaster Designation.
Gov. Chris Christie today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has granted the designation in recognition of crop damage sustained from June to November, when the state suffered from drought, a nor'easter, flash flooding and superstorm Sandy.
“Superstorm Sandy not only impacted our shoreline, but caused an immense amount of damage for our farmers, who already had suffered losses due to severe weather throughout the season,” Christie said. “While federal aid is already being provided through a variety of programs, now farmers will have additional federal agriculture disaster assistance to help them get back on their feet.”
Farmers in the aforementioned counties are eligible for assistance from the Farm Service Agency and have eight months to apply for loans. Farmers must have suffered a 30 percent loss in crop production or loss to livestock, inventory or property to be eligible.
“Although 2012 was a challenging year for many growers in a lot of ways, I’m excited we’ll be able to offer this help to recover from their 2012 losses and get them ready for the 2013 season ,” said Paul Hlubik, executive director of USDA’s Farm Service Agency in New Jersey.
The Natural Disaster Designation also covers farmers in Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Mercer, Monmouth, Ocean and Salem counties.
For more information, visit http://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/locator/app?state=nj&agency=fsa.