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Commissioner Miller Encourages Texans to Help Those Devastated by Deadly Tornadoes, Severe Flooding (5/27/2015)

AUSTIN - Parts of rural Texas have been hit hard by severe weather and experienced the wrath of Mother Nature through tornadoes, heavy rainfall, thunderstorms and flooding. As Texans continue to deal with the aftermath of this devastating weather, Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller is calling on fellow Texans to lend a helping hand to those in need by donating to the State of Texas Agriculture Relief Fund or STAR Fund.

The STAR Fund was created to collect monetary contributions from private individuals and businesses to assist farmers and ranchers in responding to and recovering from natural disasters. Funds may be used to rebuild fences, restore operations and pay for other agricultural relief efforts.

“These severe storms are catastrophic in nature, and in their wake, they’ve destroyed homes and devastated the livelihoods of the farmers and ranchers who dedicate their lives to supplying us with food and clothing,” Commissioner Miller said. “We are Texans, and when disaster strikes, our citizens rise to meet the challenge. I ask all Texans who have the means to assist their neighbors in need to please come forward and show their support.”

You can learn more about how to donate to the STAR Fund on the Texas Department of Agriculture’s (TDA) website at TexasAgriculture.gov.

As farmers and ranchers begin to assess the damage and rebuild their lives, Commissioner Miller is encouraging them to apply for assistance through the STAR Fund. TDA is now accepting applications for grants, which are available in areas where a state of disaster declaration has been issued by the governor or president.

“Every day, we depend on farmers and ranchers to provide our families with the healthy food and warm clothes to sustain our lives, and now is the time for Texas producers to lean on us,” Commissioner Miller said. “This is not a hand out, rather it’s a helping hand. I hope people will take advantage of these funds if they need them.”

Farmers and ranchers can apply for assistance through the STAR Fund by contacting TDA’s Grants Office at Grants@TexasAgriculture.gov or by visiting TexasAgriculture.gov.