The U.S. Department of Agriculture has officially declared an agricultural disaster in all 102 Illinois counties.
This news comes after heavy flooding across the state created troubling planting conditions for farmers, and after requests from Gov. JB Pritzker and Rep. Cheri Bustos for the USDA to declare the state an agricultural disaster.
In a release from his office, Gov. JB Pritzker hopes that this news will take a weight off the shoulders of farmers across the state.
“Illinois farmers have experienced months of hardship due to extreme weather across the state, but today’s declaration means we can begin the road to recovery,” said Pritzker.
According to the release, this declaration will provide federal resources to aid recovery efforts for affected farmers in the form of low-interest FSA loans. The loans can be used to restore or replace property, cover production costs, pay essential living expenses, reorganize the farming operation or refinance non-real estate operating debts, according to the release.