Federal Aid for Producers Impacted by 2022 Natural Disasters

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide more than $3 billion to commodity and specialty crop producers impacted by natural disaster events in 2022. Eligible producers can apply for financial assistance through the Emergency Relief Program (ERP) 2022. The program will help offset the financial impacts of crop yield and value losses from qualifying disasters occurring in 2022.

The 2022 Emergency Relief Program includes assistance for growers who suffered damage from Hurricane Ian.

“In our continued commitment to improving our delivery of emergency relief assistance, we have further refined our Emergency Relief Program 2022 delivery process,” said USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Zach Ducheneaux. “Instead of two separate program phases, we will now run two tracks concurrently, increasing our efficiencies in application and payment processing while ensuring equitable program delivery. We also listened to important input from producers and stakeholders and have enhanced ERP 2022 provisions to ensure shallow loss impacts on revenue are considered.” 

On Dec. 29, 2022, President Biden signed into law the Disaster Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2023 that provides about $3.7 billion in financial assistance for agricultural producers impacted by eligible natural disasters that occurred in calendar year 2022.  

ERP 2022 covers losses to crops, trees, bushes and vines due to qualifying calendar year 2022 natural disaster events including wildfires, hurricanes, floods, derechos, excessive heat, tornadoes, winter storms, freeze, smoke exposure, excessive moisture, qualifying drought and related conditions.  

ERP 2022 program benefits will be delivered to eligible producers through a two-track process. FSA intends to make both tracks available to producers at the same time. This two-track approach enables USDA to: 

  • Streamline the application process 
  • Reduce the paperwork burden on producers 
  • Proactively include provisions for underserved producers who have not been well served by past emergency relief efforts
  • Encourage producer participation in existing risk management programs to mitigate the impacts of future severe weather events

ERP 2022 Track 1 leverages existing federal crop insurance or Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP)data as the basis for calculating payments for eligible crop producers who received indemnities through these risk management programs. 

Track 2 is a revenue-based certification program designed to assist eligible producers who suffered an eligible decrease in revenue resulting from 2022 calendar year disaster events when compared with revenue in a benchmark year using revenue information that is readily available from most tax records. In cases where revenue does not reasonably reflect a normal year’s revenue, Track 2 provides an alternative method for establishing revenue.

All producers who receive ERP 2022 payments must purchase crop insurance, or NAP coverage where crop insurance is not available, in the next two available crop years. Purchased coverage must be at the 60/100 coverage level or higher for insured crops or at the catastrophic coverage level or higher for NAP crops. 

ERP 2022 eligibility details and payment calculation factor tables are available here, in the ERP Track 1 and ERP Track 2 fact sheets and through local FSA county offices.

Source: USDA FSA

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