DTN Executive Editor Marcia Zarley Taylor reported yesterday at the Minding Ag’s Business Blog that, “Delivering disaster aid when farmers need it should be a priority of federal emergency aid. But the first-year experiment with the Supplemental Revenue Assistance program (SURE for short) hasn’t accelerated the process, some farmers say, and it’s led to administrative headaches for Farm Service Agency offices that Congress may have underestimated. For example, rules on how to treat some specialty crops like seed corn still haven’t filtered down to county FSA offices, holding up payments for the 2008 crop What’s the fix?
“‘Part of the complexity of SURE occurs because it is a whole crop farm program as opposed to an individual crop program,’ says Carl Zulauf, an Ohio State University economist who monitors risk management strategies for farmers. ‘SURE would be much simpler to administer if it was based on an individual crop basis. In addition, being on an individual crop basis would allow you target the disaster declaration to an individual crop — in other words, the disaster must have happened during the growing season of the crop in the affected county in order for the crop – county combination to be eligible for SURE.’”