Disaster RulesInvolving Deceased Producers and Estates Getting Clarified

LUBBOCK, September 19, 2003    By Shawn Wade

      Over the past few months one of themost vexing problems being encountered by individuals inquiring aboutparticipation in the 2001-2002 Disaster Assistance Program has been how toapply for eligible losses on a farm when the producer who farmed the land isdeceased.

      Program rules state that DAPapplications must be signed by the eligible producer, someone authorized tosign for the eligible producer, or, in the case of a deceased producer, theindividual who has authority to enter into a contract for the deceasedproducer.

      In the case of a deceased producer,figuring out who has authority to sign the application has created a great dealof consternation for both producers and county Farm Service Agency personnel.

      Unfortunately, determining if anestate has been closed and if authority remains vested in an individual isoften a little harder to determine.

      Proof of authority is often an easything to provide through copies of court orders, letters from the Secretary ofState, or documentation authorizing the individual as the Executor of theEstate.

      If none of the above types ofdocumentation are available, other documents may be approved by FSA on acase-by-case basis. This case-by-case approval mechanism will include requeststo accept applications from, and issue payments to, heirs of the deceased.

      Once approved, payments will beissued either to the eligible individual, or the deceased producers estate asapplicable. If payment has been approved for a deceased producers heirs, thenpayment will be made in the name(s) of the heirs based on the details of thedetermination by FSA.


Hail Damage Total Still Unclear;

Harvest Aid Guidelines Available from TCE

LUBBOCK, September 19, 2003    By Shawn Wade

      A week after one of the worstlate-season hail storms in recent memory has done little to pinpoint just howmuch cotton was lost to a pair of hard charging hail storms that sliced throughthe area early last week.

      The damage, concentrated in Dawson,Terry, Lynn, Hockley and Yoakum counties, has reportedly affected upwards of150,000 acres. Acres so severely damaged that they will not be harvested isestimated at less than 100,000 acres.

      Affected producers are now in theuncomfortable position of having to assess the amount of damage incurred anddeciding what course of action they should take next.

      To help producers through thisprocess the Texas Cooperative Extension service has available a publicationtitled “Assessing Hail-Damaged Fields” that provides information on how todetermine the potential of the remaining crop. It also discusses harvest aidoptions are available to open remaining bolls and salvage the most productionfrom damaged fields.

      In order to help producers make2003 harvest aid treatment decisions, TCE Cotton Specialist Dr. Randy Boman hasalso updated the “2003 High Plains and Northern Rolling Plains Harvest AidGuide”.

      This publication, along with theother TCE publications cited, is available at local Texas Cooperative Extensionoffice locations or from the Texas A&M Agricultural Research and ExtensionCenter at Lubbock. You can also find the 2003 Harvest Aid Guide and Harvest AidPrice table in .pdf format on the Lubbock Extension Center’s website (http://lubbock.tamu.edu/). The publication “Assessing Hail-DamagedCotton” is available on the PCG website (www.plainscotton.org) along with a study evaluating theeffectiveness of harvest aids applied to hailed-on cotton.

      TCE also has prepared a chartcontaining the average retail price for most of the harvest aid productsavailable to producers. The prices shown are averages and are not reflective ofany single retail location. Producers need to be aware that prices will varyfrom location to location.


September2003 Calendar of Events

Date            Event/Location*

Sept. 24       All-Tex Seed FieldDay, Tours Begin at 10:00 a.m.,

                  All-TexSeed Headquarters, 2200 S. West Ave.,               Levelland

Sept. 24       CrosbyCounty Crop Tour, Tour will start with

                  lunchand meeting at 12:00 noon at the Ralls


Sept. 25       FiberMax Field Day,Bayer CropScience Cotton

                  ResearchFarm, FM 40 and FM 1729, 4 miles

                  eastof Lubbock on the Acuff Highway