Sen. David Perdue weighs in on disaster funding for pecan farmers

Sen. David Perdue weighs in on disaster funding for pecan farmers

ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - The pressure is on in the Senate to deliver disaster relief to Georgia farmers and U.S. Senator David Perdue told WALB a vote is expected in the Senate soon just 12 days after the House passed their version of the bill.

The $19 million Supplemental Appropriations Act includes funds for victims of hurricanes and other natural disasters in 2018, including Hurricane Michael.

The version passed by the House assigns over $3 billion to the Department of Agriculture.

Part of that money is expected to fund block grants for farmers who suffered crop loss because of Michael.

The bill also calls for assistance for pecan farmers specifically for losses suffered in the 2018 calendar year.

Perdue told WALB farmers of pecans and specialty crops are in a unique position.

“While there are insurance products where they can insure parts of their crop every year, and a lot of people did that, there’s really no insurance product for that’s available to them to insurance the trees," Perdue said. "So when the trees are damaged and they have to replant them, first of all there’s a cost in clearing, there’s a cost in replanting, but then they have somewhere around seven to 10 years before they can even start getting a revenue off those trees.”

Perdue said while pecan producers face a longer timeline, farmers across the state will continue to be devastated until funding passes.

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