Ohio Governor Mike DeWine

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine.

COLUMBUS — Richland County was one of 10 counties added on Tuesday to a list covered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretarial disaster designations, according to Governor Mike DeWine's office.

The new designations bring the total to 54 Ohio counties where farmers can seek potential relief from the USDA following Secretarial disaster designations in their counties or contiguous counties due to rain, flooding, or other weather conditions.

In letters dated Aug. 2, 2019, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said there were sufficient production losses to warrant a Secretarial natural disaster designation that adds the following 10 Ohio counties to the list of Ohio counties covered by the disaster designations: Adams, Ashland, Brown, Clermont, Clinton, Hamilton, Highland, Lorain, Richland, and Warren.

Last week, Governor DeWine announced USDA Secretarial disaster designations covering farmers in the following 44 other Ohio counties:

Allen, Athens, Auglaize, Coshocton, Crawford, Defiance, Delaware, Erie, Fairfield, Franklin, Fulton, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Hocking, Huron, Knox, Licking, Logan, Lucas, Marion, Meigs, Mercer, Monroe, Morgan, Morrow, Muskingum, Noble, Ottawa, Paulding, Perry, Pickaway, Putnam, Ross, Sandusky, Seneca, Shelby, Union, Van Wert, Vinton, Washington, Williams, Wood, Wyandot

According to the USDA, a Secretarial disaster designation makes farm operators in primary and contiguous counties eligible to be considered for certain assistance from the Farm Service Agency, which may include FSA emergency loans.

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In June, Governor DeWine requested a USDA Secretarial disaster designation for Ohio and met with farmers about the effects of heavy rainfall this year.

Farmers should contact their local FSA offices for additional information. Additional information on USDA’s disaster assistance program can be found at http://disaster.fsa.usda.gov.