The following letter was sent to Texas Governor Greg Abbott from the USDA Secretary, declaring numerous Texas counties disaster areas, including Montgomery, Walker, San Jacinto, Liberty, Harris, Trinity Counties and several more (scroll down for full list and document images)
The letter to Governor Abbott states the following:
“In accordance with 7 CFR 759.5(a), I am designating 25 Texas counties as primary natural disaster areas due to a recent drought.
According to the U.S. Drought Monitor (see http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/), these counties suffered from a drought intensity value during the growing season of 1) D2 Drought-Severe for 8 or more consecutive weeks or 2) D3 Drought-Extreme or D4 Drought-Exceptional.
In accordance with section 321(a) of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act, additional areas of your state and an adjacent state are named as contiguous disaster counties.
Enclosed you will find documentation that provides a detailed list of all primary and contiguous counties impacted by this disaster.
Other counties in Texas may have already been designated as natural disaster counties if they had previously met the requirements found under 7 CFR 759.5(a) for the current crop year.
A Secretarial disaster designation makes farm operators in primary counties and those counties contiguous to such primary counties eligible to be considered for Farm Service Agency (FSA) emergency loans, provided eligibility requirements are met. Farmers in eligible counties have 8 months from the date of a Secretarial disaster declaration to apply for emergency loans. FSA considers each emergency loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of production losses on the farm and the security and repayment ability of the operator.
Local FSA offices can provide affected farmers with further information.”