Governor Lamont Submits Request for Agricultural Disaster Declarations in Litchfield and New Haven Counties Due To Ongoing Drought
Five Connecticut Counties Received Similar Declarations in August
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont today announced that he has submitted a request to the U.S. Department of Agriculture for primary natural disaster declarations to be approved in Litchfield and New Haven counties due to damages sustained by agricultural producers in those areas from the ongoing drought impacting Connecticut.
Last month, the federal agency approved primary disaster declarations for New London and Windham counties because of the drought, resulting in Hartford, Middlesex and Tolland counties being designated as contiguous counties and making farm operators in all five of those counties eligible for consideration of certain emergency assistance from the Farm Service Agency, such as low-interest loans. If Governor Lamont’s request for primary disaster declarations in Litchfield and New Haven counties is approved, this assistance will open to farm operators in those areas, as well as to those counties that are contiguous.
In his request to Secretary of Agriculture Thomas J. Vilsack, Governor Lamont notes that Litchfield and New Haven counties have experienced the same drought as the counties with the approved declarations, including a 30% loss of any one crop as required to meet the threshold for a declaration.
“This summer’s weather conditions have been rough on farmers in Connecticut, and the approval of this federal declaration will enable those producers who are experiencing significant losses to apply for emergency assistance so they can continue supporting their businesses and the many jobs they provide,” Governor Lamont said. “While some of our counties have already received this designation, Litchfield and New Haven counties are now above the 30% crop-loss trigger required for a similar declaration. I appreciate Secretary Vilsack’s consideration of this request, as well as his ongoing support for Connecticut’s agricultural industry.”