To be eligible for the Livestock Assistance Grant Program, Arkansas producers must meet the following criteria:
• Suffered livestock forage production losses from drought during the period of March 7, 2006, to Aug. 31, 2006. Examples of losses may include: cost of lost forage, supplemental feeding costs, the cost of relocating livestock to new feed supplies, increased feed transportation costs and the cost of emergency water supplies.
• Owned eligible livestock for commercial use as part of a farming operation on March 7, 2006.
• Owned the livestock claimed for compensation by this program for at least 30 days.
The following livestock are eligible for the program:
• Adult beef cattle older than 2 years old (cows and bulls)
• Adult dairy cattle older than 2 years old (cows and bulls)
• Replacement cattle (beef and dairy; heifers and bulls)
• Stocker beef cattle (heifers, steers and bulls)
• Adult sheep
• Payments will be made on a per-head basis to compensate eligible producers for drought-related forage losses incurred for eligible livestock during the period of March 7, 2006, through Aug. 31, 2006.
• Per head payment rates will ultimately be determined by the total number of eligible livestock claimed by all Arkansas applicants and will differ for adult cattle, replacement cattle, stocker cattle and adult sheep based on standard animal units.
• The per-head payment rate cannot be determined until all applications are received and processed.
• An eligible producer cannot receive more than $10,000 in payments under this program.
• Payments cannot exceed actual forage production losses.
• Because of the number of applications anticipated and the amount of funds available, payment will likely cover only partial losses. If payments are claimed for all estimated eligible livestock in all Arkansas eligible counties, the payment rate will be in the range of $2.15 per animal unit.
• Applications for participation in the Livestock Assistance Grant Program must be submitted on the approved Arkansas Agriculture Department form and accompanied by a completed Federal Form W-9.
• All applications must be postmarked on or before Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2006.
• Hand-delivered applications must be received by the Arkansas Agriculture Department before the close of business Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2006.
• Incomplete and/or unsigned applications will not be considered.
• Information provided in the application form will be subject to on-site verification by livestock inspectors of the Arkansas Livestock and Poultry Commission (ALPC) or field inspectors of the Arkansas State Plant Board (ASPB). ALPC and ASPB are agencies of the Arkansas Agriculture Department.
The following will assist in distributing application forms:
The University of Arkansas’ Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service county offices, the Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association and Arkansas Farm Bureau’s county offices.
Application forms and information also are available on the following websites: Arkansas Agriculture Department ( http://www.aad.ar.gov), Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association ( http://www.arbeef.org) and Arkansas Farm Bureau ( http://www.arfb.com — link Livestock Drought Assistance Grant).
Potential applicants also may contact the Arkansas Agriculture Department directly at No. 1 Natural Resources Drive, Little Rock, AR 72205 or telephone (501) 683-4851.