USDA’s Farm Service Agency will allow producers who would otherwise be ineligible for the new disaster assistance programs to become eligible by paying a fee as required by the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008.
The 2008 Act requires producers who wish to participate in the new disaster programs to have crop insurance or non-insured crop disaster assistance (NAP) coverage for the land for which assistance is being requested and for all farms in all counties in which they have an interest.
Since the 2008 Act was enacted after the application periods had closed for those programs, producers who did not have such coverage could not comply with this requirement in order to be eligible for the new disaster programs. However, a waiver has been authorized that allows producers to pay a fee, called a "buy-in" fee, to be eligible for this new disaster assistance.
Every producer whose crops, including grazing lands, are not fully covered by crop insurance or NAP may take advantage of this one-time opportunity. The buy-in fee is due later than Sept. 16, 2008. Those who miss this opportunity will not be eligible for disaster assistance. Producers are reminded that the payment of the applicable buy-in fee does not afford the producer crop insurance or NAP coverage; it only affords eligibility for he 2008 disaster programs.
The buy-in fee for 2008 disaster eligibility only for either the catastrophic risk protection insurance (CAT) or NAP is $100 per crop but not more than $300 per producer per administrative county or $900 total per producer for all counties less any previously paid fees for CAT and/or NAP.
September 16, 2008 is the final date to purchase buy-in coverage to insure eligibility for any 2008 crop disaster benefits.