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Are you a farmer or rancher impacted by a hurricane or wildfire in 2017?
The new 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program provides disaster payments to producers to offset losses from hurricanes and wildfires during 2017 – particularly losses of crops, trees, bushes, and vines.
Agricultural producers affected by hurricanes and wildfires in 2017 now may apply for assistance to help recover and rebuild their farming operations. Sign up begins July 16, 2018, and continues through November 16, 2018. Read the USDA press release about 2017 WHIP.
Learn more about the program
The USDA Farm Service Agency will determine eligibility for wildfire losses on an individual basis, factoring in the level of insurance coverage purchased by the farmer. Wildfire recovery will also include mudslides and heavy smoke resulting from the effects of wildfires.
2017 WHIP for hurricane losses and related conditions, such as excessive rain and flooding, will be available for eligible farms in counties that received a qualifying Presidential Emergency Disaster Declaration or Secretarial Disaster Designation. This includes counties or parishes in at least nine states and territories:
Other crops, trees, bushes, or vines outside of these identified counties may be eligible if the producer provides documentation the loss was caused by a 2017 hurricane.
Citrus Growers in Florida
Through the new program, the USDA Farm Service Agency will directly reimburse producers for crop losses in 2018.
USDA also is providing a grant to Florida, which is reimbursing citrus producers for the cost of buying and planting replacement trees - including resetting and grove rehabilitation - and for repair of damages to irrigation systems. This grant is also providing assistance for losses of citrus production expected during the 2019 and 2020 crop years.
Risk Management Requirement
Both insured and uninsured producers are eligible to apply for the program. But all producers receiving 2017 WHIP payments will be required to purchase risk management coverage:
- Either crop insurance at the 60 percent coverage level
- Or Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program coverage if crop insurance is not available
The program requires producers to have coverage for the next two crop years.
Acreage Reporting Requirements
Producers are required to file acreage reports and report production for the applicable crop years.
The 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program covers the loss of crops, trees, bushes, or vines and the loss in production.
The program covers production loss separately as the loss may be covered by another USDA risk management program, which is calculated using the formula outlined below.
USDA is using this formula:
(Expected Value of the Crop x WHIP Factor*) – Value of Crop Harvested - Insurance Indemnity = Payment
*The WHIP factor ranges from 65 percent to 95 percent. Producers who did not insure their crops in 2017 will receive 65 percent of the expected value of the crop. Insured producers, or producers who had Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program, will receive between 70 percent and 95 percent of expected value; those purchasing the highest levels of coverage will receive 95 percent coverage.
Payments for Puerto Rico Producers
USDA is calculating payments differently in Puerto Rico because of damages to offices and the agriculture industry. USDA is asking Puerto Rican producers to provide crop acres and percent of crop loss. USDA is calculating the loss using the insurance or NCT price multiplied by the expected yield times the producers crop acres. The actual value of the crop is being calculated using the insurance or NCT price multiplied by the expected yield multiplied the reciprocal of the producer-certified percent of loss multiplied by the producer’s crop acres.
Payments for Other Producers
USDA is determining compensation by a producer’s individual losses rather than an average of losses in the area. Producers are subject to a $125,000 payment limitation, meaning a producer can’t receive more than $125,000 for losses. But a producer can receive a higher payment if three-fourths or more of their income is derived from farming or another agricultural-based business. Producers who derived 75 percent of their income in tax years 2013, 2014 and 2015 will be subject to a $900,000 payment limitation.
Prepare for your visit to the service center
Producers who have not participated in a USDA program should contact their local USDA service center to establish farm records. To establish a farm tract number, be sure to bring the following items:Proof of identity such as driver’s license or Social Security number/card
Copy of recorded deed, survey plat, rental, or lease agreement of the land (You do not have to own property to participate in USDA programs.)
Articles of incorporation, estate, or trust documents for entities
For the 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program, we also recommend that you bring:Verifiable and reliable production records by crop, type, practice, intended use, and acres if not already on file
During your visit, you may need to complete or update the following forms for your farm records:
- CCC-941 – Reports your average adjusted gross income for programs where income restrictions apply
(Note: This form does not apply to the 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program.)
- AD-1026 – Ensures a conservation plan is in place before lands with highly erodible soils are farmed, identified wetland areas are protected, and conservation compliance provisions are met
- CCC-901 – Identifies members of a farm or ranch that is a legal entity
You may also need to complete:
- FSA-892 – Request an exception to the 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program payment limitation of $125,000, if applicable.