Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Dear Mr. Loos
After visiting with several producers yesterday, it seems they all have the same need, to reduce government red tape. We need to bombard our legislators with phone calls and emails, the Starbuck fire is a disaster, just like a hurricane, etc. If someone from another state calls and asked what they can do, tell them call your legislators, they need help. We live in the BEST place on earth, in my opinion and it has been continually proven this week. This is a place no one thinks about and the national media needs enlightened. The financial loss these men and women are facing is alarming. Tell your Congress men and women they need to raise the livestock and fence disaster programs limits. These producers can't wait a year for payment, this disaster money needs to be streamlined, NOW. Fences and livestock need replaced. For instance the Livestock indemnity program covers $125,000 per individual that does nothing for someone who lost 700 head of cows. This is literally the worst disaster I have ever seen, and it's in production agriculture. Without assistance many of these producers are in jeopardy of financial failure. Many have loans at the bank and now have minimal, if any, cattle to pay them off. Common sense and flexibility are key here for recovery, and I know those two things usually don't go with the government. Government has no business in fencing restrictions, the farmers and ranchers know what works here, they ARE the experts. Pray for rain, pray for producers at this stressful time, and God bless rural America. If you haven't shed a tear this week, come volunteer, if you can keep a dry eye, you're a better man than me.

Aaron Sawyers

Comanche County Ag Agent, Kansas

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