|Storm damage to hay barn on Helicon Road.|
We recently spoke with Tim Malone, County Executive Director for Winston County Farm Service Agency Office, about a Winston County livestock producer that had lost several animals in one of the tornadoes that hit the county on the night of November 29. He said that the producer should contact the Farm Service Agency Office in Hamilton at (205) 921-3103 ext.2. Malone said “the Livestock Indemnity Program can help producers that have livestock deaths due to these storms.”
Producers that have losses should document with photos or video. They should keep purchase records, veterinarian records, tax records, insurance documents, and other similar documents. If the livestock are missing, as is often the case after tornadoes, the producer should have neighbors and family members familiar with the farm provide a written statement about their knowledge of the livestock deaths along with name, address, phone number, and their affiliation with the livestock owner. More information about the Livestock Indemnity Program is available at this link: goo.gl/hhwzOY
Malone said that in light of the extensive damage from the storms, the Winston/Marion Farm Service Agency County Committee has also applied for the Emergency Conservation Program. If approved, this could allow producers to get assistance for repairing fences, getting downed trees out of pastures, getting downed trees off fences, and picking up scattered roof tin and other debris out of pastures and hay fields. While the Emergency Conservation Program has not been approved yet, Malone urges producers to document damage with photos, and keep records of time worked repairing damage and clearing debris. Malone gave an example of a producer using a tractor with a loader to pick up debris out of a pasture. If the producer used the tractor for eight hours, then his eight hours of labor could be counted at $8-10 per hour, and the eight hours the tractor was in use would also count at another hourly rate. If the producer also hired a backhoe operator at $75 per hour, he would need to keep the receipts for that work. These records will be crucial if the Emergency Conservation Program is approved later.