Key Senate DFLers said today that their months-long push to secure disaster relief for Minnesota farmers and ranchers hit hard by last year’s severe drought has passed the Senate and now heads to Governor Walz for his signature. This comes as recent widespread storm damage has impacted producers across Minnesota.
Senators Kent Eken (DFL-Audubon), Nick Frentz (DFL – North Mankato) and Erin Murphy (DFL – Saint Paul), all members of the Senate Agriculture Committee said $5.5 million in new grant-based funding will go to livestock farmers and $1.5 million will go to specialty crop producers who reside within a designated disaster area. An additional $1.5 million is appropriated for disaster recovery loans, they said.
“Our farmers have been waiting far too long for this badly needed relief from the extreme weather conditions of the last year, and I am glad to see that this funding is finally moving forward,” said Senator Kent Eken (DFL – Audubon). “I will continue to work with my colleagues to help the communities of Greater Minnesota by getting these funds to farmers as quickly as possible.”
“At a time of legislative uncertainty, I’m proud to see bipartisan agreement to deliver this support for our farmers and ranchers, says Senator Nick Frentz (DFL – North Mankato). “I’m committed to ensuring the State of Minnesota is a supportive partner to our producers and rural communities. At a time when recent flooding has hurt farmers across our state, this assistance should be just the beginning to ensure the success of our producers and rural communities.”
“After almost a full year, Minnesota’s farmers are finally getting the relief they need,” said Senator Erin Murphy (DFL – Saint Paul), Ranking DFL-Lead on the Committee. “It should never take this long to deliver on our commitment to Minnesotans, but I am grateful that we were able to increase the pool of money. We must get this money out to our farmers and ranchers across the state as soon as possible.”