LIMESTONE COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) — Storm victims are cleaning up their private property, removing trees and boarding up their homes. However, there are some victims who have had their livelihoods disrupted due to last Monday’s storms. Farmers across the Tennessee Valley may have the opportunity to get some help cleaning up their crops. The Emergency Conservation Program helps farmers and ranchers repair damage caused by natural disasters. In rural parts of North Alabama and Southern Tennessee, that funding could be a game changer for a lot of people.
“Trees that have blown out in the pasture, fences torn down, all those kinds of things we can pay 75% of the cost to rehabilitate,” said Shane Seay, director of the Limestone County Farm Service Agency. The Limestone County FSA is already asking Washington for the ECP funding.
It’s a program each county has to ask the federal government for specifically. “Once we get an application from a participant, we will send them an approval letter once we get funding and they will have 6 months to complete the work,” said Seay.
Whether you have a cotton field or a wheat field, or maybe you’re missing some of your chicken houses, the FSA in your county might be able to help you with cleanup costs.
“They can come apply or they can document so we know, if they’ve started work, we kind of know what the condition was before they started cleaning up.”
In a time of devastation and uncertainty, the ECP can help farmers overcome the damage and get right back to work. “I hope it helps, I mean that’s our prayer is that it can help them regain some, even though its just a 75% cost share, that helps better than having to foot the bill all by yourself.”
Farmers and ranchers should check with their local FSA office to find out about ECP sign-up periods, which are set by the FSA County Committee.