Livestock disaster assistance payments will begin next week
The $750 million for livestock producers is part of $10 billion in disaster aid.
WASHINGTON – Sen. John Hoeven announced this week that the U.S. Department of Agriculture will begin sending livestock disaster assistance payments next week. USDA released details on phase one of the Emergency Livestock Relief Program (ELRP), which is funded from the $750 million that Hoeven secured in September to aid livestock producers. Since then, Hoeven has repeatedly pressed USDA officials, including
Secretary Tom Vilsack
Under Secretary Robert Bonnie
FSA Administrator Zach Ducheneaux
, to provide the assistance as soon as possible and in a way that works for ranchers. The Emergency Livestock Relief Program:
- Will make payments based on producers’ 2021 Livestock Forage Program (LFP) application. Payments will be equal to 75% of a livestock producer’s gross 2021 LFP payment.
- No signup is required, and payments will start going out next week.
“We secured this $750 million to help ranchers recover from last year’s historic drought, and the payments come as a needed relief, especially as producers are facing increased costs across the board,” Hoeven said.
To be eligible for ELRP, livestock producers must have suffered grazing losses in a county rated by the U.S. Drought Monitor as having a D2 (severe drought) for eight consecutive weeks or a D3 (extreme drought) or higher level of drought intensity during the 2021 calendar year, and have applied and been approved for 2021 LFP. USDA expects to distribute more than $577 million through ELRP phase one. Phase two will begin later this year.
The $750 million for livestock producers is part of $10 billion in disaster aid, which also includes $9.25 billion in disaster funding to aid row crop producers who suffered losses due to droughts, hurricanes, wildfires, floods and other qualifying disasters in calendar years 2020 and 2021. USDA will provide that assistance using existing crop insurance data in a two-phase approach as well, beginning this spring.
USDA is also expanding the Emergency Assistance for Livestock Program (ELAP) to cover above normal costs of hauling livestock to forage. This follows the expansion of ELAP to compensate ranchers for increased costs of hauling feed to livestock.
Producers should contact their FSA county office or visit farmers.gov for more information.