FSA offers loss assistance
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) Wyoming State Executive Director William Bunce announced March 9 that producers who suffered livestock and/or honeybee feed or grazing losses due to the recent winter storm could be eligible for assistance through the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program (ELAP).
“The recent winter storm affected many livestock operations, leaving livestock stranded and producers with snow removal costs as well as increased feed expenses,” said Bunce.
“ELAP provides emergency relief for losses due to feed or water shortages, disease, adverse weather or other conditions, which are not adequately addressed by other disaster programs,” he said.
ELAP assists producers with additional livestock feed purchased above normal quantities. Associated equipment rental fees for hay lifts and snow removal may be eligible as a part of a producer’s additional feed expenses.
ELAP covers up to 150 lost grazing days. If a producer has been forced to remove livestock from a grazing pasture due to an eligible disaster condition, FSA can assist with eligible grazing losses if they are greater than eligible additional feed expenses.
Assistance with transportation costs of livestock, forage and/or water are only for drought events.
Producers are required to maintain records and receipts, which include but are not limited to, the costs of transporting livestock feed to eligible livestock, receipts for equipment rental fees for hay lifts and snow removal and feed purchase receipts.
Producers must submit a notice of loss to their local FSA office within 30 calendar days of when the loss is apparent. A notice of loss can be made over the phone.
Additionally, the deadline to submit an application for payment for 2023 ELAP assistance is Jan. 30, 2024. Once the 2023 payment rates are established, FSA will review applications for approval.
“Producers should call their local FSA to submit a notice of loss and for more specific information on required records, receipts and documentation,” said Bunce.
Producers who experience livestock deaths in excess of normal mortality may be eligible for the Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP).
To participate in LIP, producers will have to provide verifiable documentation of their inventory and the death losses resulting from an eligible adverse weather event. A notice of loss must be submitted to their local FSA office within 30 calendar days of when the loss of livestock is apparent.
For more information regarding ELAP, contact a local USDA Service Center or visit fsa.usda.gov/disaster.