Financial Support for Farmers during the COVID-19 Pandemic
August 13, 2020
The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP) recently announced that the Wisconsin Farm Support Program is open for applications! The program was created under Governor Tony Evers in May of 2020 and provides $50 million of direct payments to support Wisconsin farmers undergoing financial challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. The first round of funding was in June of 2020, and $41.6 million was already distributed to 12,000 farmers around the State. Wisconsin has $8.4 million dollars remaining to support more farmers! The application period is from August 10-August 24, 2020 and you can apply here.
Do I Qualify?
For farmers to qualify for the WI Farm Support Program they must have not received payment in the first round of applications. Moreover, the farmers must have a gross income from farming between $10,000-$5 million in 2019.
What Counts as Income?
“Gross income” is income received from the business of farming, so farmers cannot include fair market value of crops and livestock for subsistence farming. According to the DATCP, “income” is not limited to only sales but can include other forms of income such as, rental payments from the Conservation Reserve Program, or payments from the federal insurance programs. Income from a fish farm, an area where fish are grown or raised and not merely caught or harvested, may be included in gross farm income. A tribal entity operating a farm business may also apply for the program. A tribal entity must use the amount from line 9 of a pro forma federal schedule F to determine the tribal entity’s gross income from farming.
Once applications are reviewed and approved, the direct payment amount will be determined and issued by the Wisconsin Department of Revenue in mid-September. Please visit revenue.wi.gov for more information. Share the news about this program with any WI farmers that may qualify!