I hope you are all doing well and that your spring work has gone smoothly.
You may have heard something about the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) just recently announced. I just wanted to make sure you are aware of this program and perhaps save you a bit of time by getting a little more of the details about how the program works. So I have been in discussion with our local FSA personnel, and am sharing what I’ve learned:
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Stability Act (CARES Act), and the CCC Charter Act authorized the Secretary to implement CFAP. This program provides direct assistance to ag producers who suffered a 5% or greater national price loss as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic/outbreak. The approved AD-3114 workbook calculator/forms and CFAP handbook are scheduled to be available beginning May 26th. This program is not a first come/first serve type of program- so there is no rush. FSA is anticipating an influx of customers, therefore after a CFAP application is approved, the producer will receive 80% of the payment, and then after August 28th, the national office will determine the remaining 20% payment distribution.
I’m attaching the FSA Farmers.gov link so you can check out the information. https://www.farmers.gov/cfap. Please look at the livestock portion of the website. A single payment for livestock will be calculated using the sum of the producer’s number of livestock sold between January 15 and April 15, 2020, multiplied by the payment rates per head, and the highest inventory number of livestock between April 16 and May 14, 2020, multiplied by the payment rate per head.
Producers must provide the following information for CFAP:
· Total sales of eligible livestock, by species and class, between January 15, 2020, to April 15, 2020, of owned inventory as of January 15, 2020, including any offspring from that inventory; and
· highest inventory of eligible livestock, by species and class, between April 16, 2020, and May 14, 2020.
Right now, the eligibility forms are the basic eligibility forms that everyone completes for payment limitation purposes. Many producers will already have this information on file, and may only need to update their AGI form for FY2020. Producers new to FSA will have additional paperwork to complete, but from what I understand FSA is putting together a call center to assist new producers with the forms and will help them contact their local FSA office to schedule an appointment to sign up for CFAP.
Once producers have gathered their crop and/or livestock information, they can contact the office to set up an appointment, and we will compile the producer’s forms for sign up. Our office is still operating at a level 2 status, which means, we are open to calls, phone appointments, emails, but cannot work one-on-one in the office quite yet. FSA has taken protecting PII to another level too, and we are now handling applications through an app called “BOX.” It’s like an electronic mailbox; FSA uploads the forms to the BOX and then it sends an email invitation to the producer, and the producer sets up a free BOX account to access, view, print, and upload their information back to FSA. It does look like Producers can sign up on their own, but would need to obtain level 2 e-auth access, but if producers can be patient and set up an appointment with our office, we would like to assist and make sure there are no hang ups or eligibility issues, because ultimately all applications have to be submitted through the FSA CFAP automated system before the COC or applicable reviewing authority can act on the application.
Suzanne Menges Trusted Risk Advisor firstname.lastname@example.org