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Written by Holyoke Enterprise   

New livestock indemnity program announced by FSA

Eligible ranchers and livestock producers can begin applying for benefits through the Livestock Indemnity Program provided in the 2008 Farm Bill.

“This program will provide livestock producers with a vital safety net to help them overcome the damaging financial impact of natural disasters,” said Gary Wall, acting executive director for USDA Farm Service Agency in Colorado.

The Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) provides assistance to producers for livestock deaths that result from disaster. LIP compensates livestock owners and contract growers for livestock death losses in excess of normal mortality due to adverse weather, including losses due to hurricanes, floods, blizzards, disease, wildfires, extreme heat and extreme cold. Eligible losses must have occurred on or after Jan. 1, 2008, and before Oct. 1, 2011.

The following provides the final dates to file a notice of loss and/or application for payment for either 2008 or 2009 livestock losses. For livestock deaths in calendar year 2008, final date to file a notice of loss and final date to submit an application for payment is Sept. 13, 2009.

For deaths between Jan. 1, 2009 and July 12, 2009, notice of loss must be filed by Sept. 13, 2009, and applications for payment must be submitted by Jan. 30, 2010. If deaths occur between July 13, 2009 and Dec. 31, 2009, final date to file a notice of loss is 30 days after death is apparent, and final date to submit an application for payment is Jan. 30, 2010.

Specific provisions for the other supplemental agricultural disaster assistance programs authorized by the 2008 Act—the Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP), the Supplemental Revenue Assistance Program (SURE), the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honey Bees and Farm-Raised Fish (ELAP) and the Tree Assistance Program (TAP)—will be implemented through separate rulemakings and announced at a later date.

For more information on available supplemental disaster assistance programs, please visit your FSA county office or


USDA to collect data on land rental rates

U.S. Department of Agriculture relies on cash rental data to develop and administer programs that benefit Colorado’s farmers and rural communities. To provide this needed information, USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will soon begin contacting farmers and ranchers throughout the state to participate in the Cash Rents Survey.

Results will be reported in the spring of 2010 when NASS publishes the average cash rental rates at the national, state and county levels for non-irrigated cropland, irrigated cropland and pastureland.

“This data can be an important decisioin-making tool for farmers, ranchers and other landowners,” said Bill Meyer, director of the NASS Colorado Field Office. “For instance, it can be used in negotiating rental agreements and in making future business decisions.”

To collect the data, NASS will mail survey forms to some producers and will contact others by phone as part of its routine livestock and crop surveys.

“Our goal is to make it as convenient as possible for farmers and ranchers to provide this information. They can mail a survey form back, reply online or over the phone,” Meyer said.

“Regardless of which method they choose, they can be assured that the confidentiality of all responses is protected by federal law. NASS publishes only aggregate-level data, ensuring that no individual operation or producer can be identified.”

For more information about the Cash Rents Survey, call the NASS Colorado Field Office at 800-392-3202. All NASS reports are available online at