Hoeven Working to Increase Limits for FSA Loans, Loan Guarantees to Help Farmers Facing Drought, Low Commodity Prices

Agriculture Panel Expresses Support for Senator’s Legislation

WASHINGTON – At a hearing of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee this week, Senator John Hoeven, chairman of the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Committee, outlined his legislation, the Capital for Farmers and Ranchers Act, which would increase the limits for loans and loan guarantees under the Farm Service Agency (FSA). This would help ensure farmers and ranchers have access to enough capital to continue their operations when revenue is limited, for instance, when facing low commodity prices or natural disasters. Today’s hearing panel, which consisted of farm operators from across the nation and represented a variety of commodities, expressed support for the legislation.

“Farming has always been capital intensive,” said Hoeven. “When revenue is limited, our ag producers need tools like the FSA loans and loan guarantees to get them through the hard times. This gives farmers the option to hold off on selling their crops when prices are low and to weather the damage of drought and other natural disasters. However, the loan limits have not kept up with the costs of land, inputs and equipment. My legislation would increase the limits to reflect the reality our farmers and ranchers face.” 

Hoeven is working to reintroduce his Capital for Farmers and Ranchers Act in the new Congress. Specifically, the senator’s bill would increase the FSA loan guarantee amount from $1.39 million to $2.5 million and double the amount of Direct Operating and Direct Farm Ownership Loans from $300,000 to $600,000.