DENVER — Friday, June 14, 2013 — Gov. John Hickenlooper was notified this week by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack that 12 counties qualify for federal disaster relief because of drought conditions. Six counties were declared primary natural disaster areas due to a recent drought and an additional six were declared as contiguous disaster counties.
The primary counties are Dolores, Hinsdale, La Plata, Montezuma, Ouray and San Miguel. The contiguous counties are Archuleta, Gunnison, Mineral, Montrose, Saguache and San Juan.
The federal disaster relief includes Farm Service Agency (FSA) emergency loans. Farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration to apply for emergency loan assistance. FSA will consider each emergency loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of production losses, security available and repayment ability.
Local FSA offices can provide farmers with more information.