Virginia Governor Timothy M. Kaine has announced that the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture has designated Scott County a primary natural disaster area due to reductions in farm production caused by frost, freezing and low temperatures that occurred from April 6, 2007 through April 8, 2007.

The disaster designation makes farmers eligible for low-interest loans and any supplemental relief that may be provided by Congress.

“The USDA’s approval means individuals in these Virginia localities are eligible to receive some much needed assistance,” said Governor Kaine. “Our office will continue to work with the other counties to expedite their pending requests.”

Farmers in the following counties have been given contiguous disaster designation and are also eligible for federal assistance: Lee, Russell, Washington and Wise

Requests for primary federal disaster designations are pending for five counties due to farm production losses caused by frost, freezing and low temperatures: Lee, Roanoke, Russell, Smyth, and Washington

The disaster declarations make farm operators in both primary and contiguous areas eligible to be considered for low-interest emergency loans from the Farm Service Agency (FSA) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, provided they meet eligibility requirements.

FSA will consider each application on its own merits by taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. Local FSA offices can provide affected farmers with additional information.

In July 2007, Carroll and Patrick Counties were declared primary natural disaster areas due to reductions in farm production caused by frost, freeze and low temperatures that occurred from April 6, 2007 through April 10, 2007.