U.S. Representative Antonio Delgado (NY-19) and Rep. Jahana Hayes (CT-05), announced the introduction of H.R. 8042, the Helping America’s Farmers Act. H.R. 8042 would create a new economic injury disaster loan program at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency (FSA), and allow farmers access to the capital they need with terms and requirements that fit their businesses. This legislation is endorsed by the National Milk Producers Federation, the New York Farm Bureau, the Dairy Farmers of America, and others.

Rep. Delgado led efforts to ensure small farmers are eligible for EIDL loans through the Small Business Administration (SBA). Despite this important step, the program is not designed for farmers’ specific needs. The Helping Small Farmers Act would create an Agriculture Economic Injury Disaster Loan (AEIDL) run through the FSA specifically designed for agricultural producers including horticulture, nursery crops, floriculture, non-specialty crops, wool, livestock, dairy, aquaculture, or specialty crops. Like the EIDL program, farmers who apply will receive a $20k grant upon submission of application that does not need to be paid back. AEIDL loan terms, however, would be much more flexible and favorable than those offered under SBA’s program.

“Our family farmers across upstate were already facing a difficult farm economy that has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, federal programs targeting small businesses and farm operations have fallen far short of meeting the dire needs of our family farmers. That’s why I am proud to introduce this bill that will finally deliver the support farmers need to overcome this pandemic – a program that provides immediate relief paired with low- or no-interest loans with flexible terms for repayment or forgiveness. The Helping America’s Farmers Act would finally ensure our farmers are able to access funding and support tailored to their specific needs,” said Rep. Antonio Delgado, member of the Agriculture Committee. “Recovery from the coronavirus pandemic will require short-term solutions and long-term assistance for our farmers. I will keep listening to our agriculture community to make sure future relief and legislation includes their needs and concerns.”

For details about this important farming act visit Rep. Delgado's website by CLICKING HERE.