U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith and Representatives Jim Hagedorn (MN-1), Angie Craig (MN-2), Dean Phillips (MN-3), Betty McCollum (MN-4), Ilhan Omar (MN-5), Tom Emmer (MN-6), Collin Peterson (MN-7), and Pete Stauber (MN-8) urged U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue to provide federal assistance to Minnesota farmers overwhelmed by significant wet weather during this year’s harvest. In a letter to the USDA, members of the Minnesota Congressional Delegation offered their support for Governor Tim Walz’s request for a Department of Agriculture Secretarial Disaster Declaration to assist communities that are recovering from catastrophic weather conditions this fall.
Their letter says: Flooded fields have created unworkable field conditions for many producers in Minnesota. During September and October, parts of the state received more than 400 percent of the typical amount of rainfall, and the Red River reached record levels that are normally seen during the spring thaw. As a result, the harvest of sugarbeets, potatoes, edible beans, soybeans, wheat, corn, and other crops has slowed or stopped altogether. We also ask that you take crop quality losses into account as you make decisions relating to disaster assistance.
A disaster declaration will provide much needed financial support and open the door to eligibility for important disaster programs such as the Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+). Congress appropriated funds for WHIP+ to provide support during disaster situations like this, and we ask that you act quickly to provide certainty for Minnesotans.