The Farm Service Agency (FSA) has reprogrammed $185 million dollars to help address a backlog of direct and guaranteed farm operating loan applications. The Hagstrom Report says that’s enough to service approximately 1,900 applications, but many farm groups say more money is needed. The funds were approved by Congress and will allow the agency to cover up to 30 percent of its expected shortfall before the new fiscal year begins on October 1. The FSA said some of its customers are experiencing challenges due to the current economic climate and have been waiting 60 days for approval. This funding is expected to help those applicants who have been waiting the longest to obtain credit or restructure loans. National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson said, “The reprogramming is greatly appreciated, but this will only alleviate approximately 30 percent of FSA’s budget shortfall. NFU has been in constant contact with members of Congress and the U.S. Department of Agriculture regarding the need for additional credit.” Johson said additional steps will be needed to address the backlog of applicants for FSA loans.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting news service.