Over 140 agricultural groups this week joined a letter expressing deep concern over USDA’s Emergency Relief Program (ERP) for 2022. Four Oklahoma Ag Groups- Oklahoma Farm Bureau, Oklahoma Cotton Council, Oklahoma Pecan Growers Association and the Oklahoma Soybean Association- have signed the letter to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack.
The groups wrote, “We are very concerned about two newly introduced ERP 2022 provisions outlined in program guidance released on October 27: (1) progressive payment factors used to prorate payments; and (2) the method use to incorporate producer-paid insurance premiums. Neither of these provisions were part of ERP 2020 or ERP 2021, and both appear inconsistent with congressional intent of the enabling legislation…
“While we appreciate the funding restraints under which ERP 2022 was developed, we believe that USDA should instead aim to provide more equitable support for losses of all magnitudes. This can be achieved by using a single, uniform factor, as USDA has done in the past. With regards to incorporating the producer-paid premiums, this change will keep some growers from qualifying for any assistance and create a significant disparity of payments among producers.”
The groups conclude, “Although Phase 1 of ERP 2020 and ERP 2021 were not perfect, they were well received by farmers experiencing losses and provided a more equitable approach to assistance than ERP 2022. We urge USDA to alter the current program calculations in a manner that more fully meets the needs of all producers.”
Earlier this month- Oklahoma Farm Report’s Ron Hays talked with Tom Sell of Combest and Sell about the details of the ERP 2022- and you can hear their conversation and read more by clicking here.
Read the full letter and review the 140 ag groups that have signed it below: