The federal government has now declared all 92 Indiana counties as agricultural disaster areas following the state’s worst drought in decades.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has added 12 Indiana counties as primary natural disaster areas, boosting to 78 the number of counties with that designation.
All 92 counties now have that disaster status, however, because Indiana’s 14 other counties are next one or more of the primary disaster areas.
Farm operators in every Indiana county are now eligible to apply for low-interest loans intended to cover part of their drought losses.
Indiana Farm Service Agency director Julia Wickard says that unless Congress approves additional aid measures under a new farm bill the low-interest loans will be the only drought assistance available to Hoosier farmers.