N.D. Gov. Requests Weather Damage Crop Assessment

June 7, 2004

North Dakota Gov. John Hoeven has sent a letter to Farm Service Agency State Director Gary Nelson requesting that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) complete a damage assessment of agriculture production to document crop and forage losses for all North Dakota counties.

The move was the first step in making a request for a secretarial disaster declaration from the USDA for counties suffering crop or forage losses due to frost, flooding, ground saturation, storms, wind, severe temperatures and very dry conditions.

“Although it is early in the growing season, preliminary results indicate that a number of counties will likely qualify for crop losses, particularly owing to excessive rain in the northern and eastern parts of the state,” Hoeven said. “At the same time, we are again confronting dry conditions in the west.”

Hoeven also reminded producers that crop insurance changes require them to be in close communications with their agent regarding prevented planting acres. They must report their inability to seed their crop within 72 hours of their planting deadline. Planting deadlines vary for each crop and region. They also need to document the details with their local Farm Service Agency office.

“With too much rain at the wrong time of the year, some farmers just won’t be able to seed their fields,” Hoeven said. “I urge farmers to be proactive in working with their crop insurance provider to ensure prevented planting coverage.”

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