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Strain pushes for disaster declaration

July 16, 2008

Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M urged USDA Secretary Ed Schafer to designate 23 Louisiana parishes as disaster areas.
“Extreme weather systems with excessive rain, hail, high winds and tornadoes ripped through the state in April and May,” Strain said. “The storms hit prime agricultural areas and severely curtailed production.
“The rising costs of fuel, feed, fertilizer and supplies in conjunction with the bad weather are causing problems and it will be tough for farmers to stay in business without assistance.”
Strain identified Ascension, Assumption, Avoyelles, Catahoula, Concordia, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Evangeline, Iberia, Iberville, Lafayette, LaSalle, Livingston, Pointe Coupee, Rapides, St. Helena, St. John, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, Tangipahoa, West Baton Rouge and West Feliciana parishes as within the proposed disaster area.
“With a declared disaster designation the farmers in these parishes will be eligible to apply for federal aid,” Strain said. “I urge Secretary Schafer to act quickly.”