Florida’s Agriculture Commissioner Urges President to Approve Major Disaster Declaration

Nikki Fried, Florida Agriculture Commissioner, has written a letter to President Trump urging him to approve Florida’s request for a Major Disaster Declaration for North Florida counties impacted by Hurricane Sally. The Category 2 storm, on September 16th unleashed close to thirty inches of rain across the Florida Panhandle, flooding hundreds of thousands of acres of farms and causing up to 100% crop losses. Agricultural crops impacted by Hurricane Sally include 100,000 acres each of peanuts, cotton, and hay; 10,000 acres of corn; 4,000 acres of horse farms, and other important commodities including seafood, aquaculture, pecans, walnuts, and timber. On September 16th the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) did issue an emergency declaration, which made immediate disaster aid available. However, neither the president nor the U.S. Department of Agriculture have yet issued the disaster declarations that make critical federal resources available for the agriculture community’s recovery.

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