Florida state officials have announced that the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture has allocated $380.7 million in Federal black grant funding for Florida farmers devastated by Hurricane Michael, including direct relief for timber producers. Timber is the leading industry in the Florida Panhandle, and suffered a $1.3 billion economic blow from Hurricane Michael. An estimated 550 million trees, weighing 72 million tons, were damaged or destroyed by the massive Category 5 hurricane. Clearing downed timber can cost $2,000 per acre, compounding the crop’s financial loss.
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