The U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved natural disaster designations for 43 counties that suffered severe damage from the Halloween floods, including Herkimer, Oneida and Otsego counties.
This designation allows farm owners and operators access to federal emergency loans and other aid programs from the Farm Service Agency (FSA) to help recover their losses.
“After weathering a brutal farming season last year, the USDA’s disaster designation will provide much needed assistance to farmers and growers throughout Upstate New York,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer. “From corner to corner of the state, I have seen firsthand the aftermath of last year’s severe rain and flooding. Thankfully, this disaster declaration means our upstate farmers and growers will have access to critical emergency loans and more, at a time when they need it the most.”
The USDA offers programs and services to help farming communities recover from production and physical losses due to drought, flooding, and other natural disasters.
Other counties receiving the designation include: , Albany, Allegany, Cattaraugus, Cayuga, Chautauqua, Chemung, Chenango, Clinton, Columbia, Delaware, Erie, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Genesee, Greene, Hamilton, Jefferson, Lewis, Livingston, Madison, Monroe, Montgomery, Niagara, Onondaga, Ontario, Orleans, Oswego, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Schuler, Seneca, Steuben, Sullivan, Tioga, Washington, Wyoming, and Yates.
Schumer and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand both pushed for the designation to help local communities after the Halloween floods.