MEDIA RELEASE 054
CONTACT: Diane Ley, State Executive Director
(Hilo, Hawaii, March 12, 2012) – The continuing emission of elevated levels of S02 from the Halemaumau Volcanic Pit on the Island of Hawaii has caused agricultural producers to suffer accelerated corrosion to their fence infrastructure. Farms and ranches experiencingaccelerated corrosion to their fence lines may be eligible for cost-share assistance under the Emergency Conservation Program (ECP). This disaster program, administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency (FSA), provides cost-share assistance if the damage is so severe and costly that Federal assistance is required to return the land to productive agricultural use.
The Hawaii County FSA Office has announced the following Emergency Conservation practice is available to ranchers and other producers on the island.
EC3 –Restoring or replacing fences needed to restore the land to productive agricultural use to include:
Fences must be used for agricultural purposes. Ornamental fences are not eligible for assistance.
Cost-share and approvals will be based on:
- Age of fence at the time of disaster
- If fence was used for purpose of excluding or enclosing livestock
- Type of fence existing before disaster
- Extent of damage of fence
Areas of consideration are Puna, Volcano, Pahala, Naalehu, South Point, Kona District, South Kohala District to include the Mana areas, and up to PTA to include the sheep station areas.
A producer qualifying for EC3 assistance may receive cost shares not to exceed 75 percent of the cost of installing eligible measures. Cost-share assistance is limited to $200,000 per person per natural disaster. Note: This is a 2nd signup of the previous ECP program for VOG damages. Any cost-share received from the original signup will be counted towards the $200,000 limitation.
To be eligible for cost shares, practices shall not be started until all of the following are met:
- An application for cost-share assistance has been filed
- The local FSA County Committee (COC) or its representative has conducted an onsite inspection of the damaged area.
- A needs determination has been made.
Requests for assistance will be accepted at the FSA County Office in Hilo March 12 to May 10, 2012.
For additional eligibility requirements and program limitations regarding ECP, visit the FSA website at www.fsa.usda.gov
or contact the Hawaii County Office in Hilo at (808) 933-8381.
To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Stop 9410, Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call toll-free at (866) 632-9992 (English) or (800) 877-8339 (TDD) or (866) 377-8642 (English Federal-relay) or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish Federal-relay). USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.