Orleans declared primary natural disaster area due to drought
WASHINGTON — Orleans County has joined the list of counties in New York that have been declared primary natural disaster areas due to the drought conditions.
Orleans farmers were eligible for disaster relief because the county was contiguous to Genesee County, which made the list last month as a primary natural disaster area.
But now Orleans has its own designation following the the Sept. 9 designation by the US Department of Agriculture. Allegany, Cattaraugus, Cortland and Onondaga counties all were named to the list on Friday, bringing the total to 20 counties with primary designation, and six more that are contiguous.
Qualified farm operators in the designated areas are eligible for low-interest emergency loans from USDA’s Farm Service Agency, provided eligibility requirements are met.
Farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration to apply for loans to help cover part of their actual losses. FSA will consider each loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. FSA has a variety of programs, in addition to the EM loan program, to help eligible farmers recover from adversity, the USDA said.