Summary: In the latest budget, the N.C. General Assembly approved $30 million in federal COVID funds for one-time assistance to swine and dairy producers for losses due to closures or lost contracts.
Summary of Talking Points:
- In this year’s budget, the N.C. General Assembly approved $30 million in one-time assistance for swine producers and dairies who suffered losses during the pandemic due to closures or lost contracts.
- These are part of the federal COVID funds designated to help states and I am grateful legislators chose to include these agricultural producers.
- We have seen a significant number of swine farms that have lost contracts and dairies that have been forced out of business because of the pandemic. If you recall, some dairies had to dump milk because of supply chain issues. It was a rough time for many farmers.
- To determine eligibility, swine and dairy producers will need to submit an application, since funding must comply with the rules for the Coronavirus State Fiscal Recovery Fund.
- The application period is now open and producers can find a link to them on our homepage at www.ncagr.gov. Keep in mind there are separate applications for eligible swine and dairy producers.
- The application process will take place in two phases. Phase I, which determines program eligibility, is underway now. Eligible applicants will receive a one-time assistance payment of $31,500 under Phase 1.
- Phase 2 will focus on infrastructure modifications to barns, hog houses and/or lagoons. We will be rolling out more details on that phase in early February.
- To begin the process, producers should submit an online application and all appropriate forms. More information on required documents is included in the application packet online.
- Producers can contact the NCDA&CS COVID Assistance helpline at 866-747-9823 with questions. Additionally, local extension offices, Farm Service Agency and N.C. Farm Bureau offices can assist producers with applications.
- The deadline to apply is June 30, 2023, but funds are limited, so we encourage farmers who are eligible to go ahead and apply and not wait.