Tuesday, May 07, 2024

Ted Cruz and Ronny Jackson push legislation to help ranchers who lost livestock in Panhandle wildfires


U.S. Senator Ted Cruz and U.S. Rep. Ronny Jackson, both Republicans, are pushing legislation offering additional financial aid to ranchers who lost an excessive amount of unborn livestock in a disaster. It could help those in the Texas Panhandle trying to recover from devastating wildfires that killed more than 15,000 head of cattle, including pregnant cows.

The bill aims to enhance the Livestock Indemnity Program, administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The program was first introduced in the 2018 Farm Bill and pays livestock producers for excess deaths from severe weather, disease, or attacks by certain other animals. These payments are determined by the Secretary of Agriculture and typically equal to 75% of the average market price for the animal.

But the program doesn’t cover the death of unborn livestock. This has created another financial setback for Panhandle ranchers, who are trying to recoup their losses after the region was engulfed by wildfires in February and March. The largest of the fires was the Smokehouse Creek fire — which became the largest in state history after burning more than 1 million acres in the rural region...more

No comments: