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STATE OF TEXAS AGRICULTURE RELIEF FUND AVAILABLE FOR TEXAS FARMERS AND RANCHERS (8/21/2023)

AUSTIN – Today, Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller announced that the State of Texas Agriculture Relief, or STAR Fund, is ready to assist Texas agriculture producers affected by critical wildfire activity that has sparked across the state. At least 8,500 acres of Texas land have burned since Aug. 1.

“Neighbors, our governor has declared a state of disaster in 191 Texas counties affected by wildfires,” said Commissioner Miller. “I fully support him in this decision. The hard truth is that rural communities are frequently hit the hardest during wildfire season. This disaster declaration enables Texans to free up vital resources to aid impacted communities. TDA stands ready to assist our rural and ag communities in whatever way we can.”

Through the STAR Fund, TDA reimburses qualified agricultural producers 50% of eligible expenses, up to $4,000. While funds are generally not intended to compensate individuals or businesses for crop or livestock losses, STAR Fund money is traditionally used to assist in rebuilding fences, restoring operations, and paying for other agricultural disaster relief costs needed to restart agricultural operations.

To be eligible, an agriculture business/operation/ranch/farm must be located in a county included in the Texas Governor’s disaster declaration. Wildfire disaster declaration counties can be found here. 

Applicants have 90 business days from the date of the Governor’s proclamation to turn in an application. Farmers and ranchers can apply for assistance through the STAR Fund by visiting the STAR Fund web page on the TDA website. 

Verification of the damage caused by the disaster is required prior to TDA disbursing funds. Damage can be documented through pictures or photos, certifications, or other documentation.

“This is not a handout, rather it’s a helping hand,” stated Miller. “I hope people will take advantage of these funds if they need them. In the meantime, I ask all Texans to hold those in these affected communities close in your hearts and lift them up in your prayers.”

If you are interested in donating to the STAR Fund, visit the TDA home page at www.texasagriculture.gov. You may make a secure online donation or send a check.

 

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