May 15 2007

Graham, DeMint Support Request for Disaster Declaration

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Senators Lindsey Graham and Jim DeMint joined South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford in urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture to provide a Secretarial disaster declaration to cover agriculture losses suffered in the early April freeze. 

A Secretarial disaster declaration would allow eligible producers to qualify for low-interest emergency loans and other disaster assistance to help recover from these losses.

“It is imperative that we afford relief to our farming community as they suffer the effects of devastating freezing temperatures in early April,” the Senators said in the letter to Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns.

The freezing temperatures April 7 through April 10 severely damaged or destroyed the majority of the state’s fruit, row and nursery crops in the middle of the 2007 spring planting season.  Farm Service Agency Damage Assessment Reports indicate that the freezing temperatures destroyed over 90 percent of the peach crop.