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-- in the midwest now are suffering through the worst drought to hit the US in fifty years.
In Kentucky 26 counties have been declared disaster regions by the federal government -- some government help is on the way.
But is it enough Kentucky's agriculture commissioner James -- joins us exclusively to talk about this commissioner thanks for joining us.
Thank you for the invitation to -- here so how serious is the problem there.
It's very serious 77%.
Crop is in areas designated as severe drought.
We're looking at 66.
Percent less corn yield this year than a normal year or so it's a very -- situation here in Kentucky.
So -- tried to quantify the loss.
Well it's corn is about the third biggest agriculture crop here in Kentucky and we were bragging last year we top five billion dollars as an industry and agriculture in this year.
Due to the drought in the ripple effects that the corn crop is gonna have -- -- -- crop and then different grain crops in Kentucky.
We're we're afraid -- that number could dip below four billion dollars worth of economic impact in Kentucky so we're we're looking at -- significant drop in economic activity in Kentucky due to the dry out from agriculture.
So what does that mean to local farmers -- what kind of -- you think that they'll be reaching out for.
There's not a lot of -- after the US department of agriculture's aware of the situation.
We're on a daily conference call here at the Kentucky Department of Agriculture with the USDA talking about drought conditions.
Talking about programs that are available and we're trying to spread the word -- farmers that.
First in form of program that that's available for farmers are emergency loans in counties that have been declared disaster areas.
And as of today there have been.
Counties in the United States and 29 states that have been declared.
Disaster areas so the biggest program that they have -- to go to the Farm Service Agency and apply for an emergency loan.
The government has lowered the interest rate on that loan from.
Three and three quarters percent down around one and three quarters percent so significant decline in the interest rates but that's about it as far -- But I understand the SBA also provides emergency loans as well up to two million dollars in the interest rate on that is something like three to 4% depending on who you are.
Do you do you see that as a possibility in our our farmers taking advantage of that.
Yes that is a possibility unfortunately need to get a farm bill passed in in congress right now -- I think that USDA's doing everything that that he can -- everybody's -- of the situation we're in a different economic time.
Different time in in the world with respect to -- so subsidies are off the table and I don't think there's a lot of support among the public for subsidies right now.
Basically with a partially more than any -- in grain.
But with respect to help they the emergency disaster loans are available for those farmers in those counties that have been declared disaster areas -- the interest rates have been reduced -- 50% which is very get to the farmers.
-- commissioner we will certainly keep our fingers crossed for rain --
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