The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is encouraging producers who have suffered eligible disaster-related losses to act to secure assistance by Sept. 30, 2014.
Anyone who has not filed by that date may see congressionally mandated payment reductions.
Livestock producers who have experienced grazing losses since October 2011 and may be eligible for benefits but have not yet contacted their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) office should do so as soon as possible.
The Budget Control Act passed by Congress in 2011 requires USDA to implement reductions of 7.3 percent to the Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP) in the new fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1, 2014.
However, producers seeking Livestock Forage Disaster Program support who have scheduled appointments with their local FSA office before Oct. 1, even if the appointment occurs after Oct.1, will not see reductions in the amount of disaster relief they receive.
USDA is encouraging producers to register, request an appointment or begin a Livestock Forage Disaster Program application with their county FSA office before Oct. 1, 2014, to lock in the current zero percent sequestration rate.
As an additional aid to qualified producers applying for LFP, the Farm Service's Agency has developed an online registration that enables farmers and ranchers to put their names on an electronic list before the deadline to avoid reductions in their disaster assistance. This is an alternative to visiting or contacting the county office.
To place a name on the Livestock Forage Disaster Program list online, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/disaster-
Producers who already contacted the county office and have an appointment scheduled need do nothing more.