Willie rides to the rescue: Farm Aid Partners With High Plains RC&D and Local Organizations To Provide Assistance to Cimarron County Farmers and Ranchers


Farm Aid has announced that it has committed funds through its Family Farm Disaster Fund to support Cimarron County farmers and ranchers hard hit by winter storms. Farm Aid is delivering $9,000 in emergency assistance to support local relief efforts.

Farm Aid will provide $9,000 to the High Plains Resource Conservation & Development (RC&D) Council, located in Buffalo , Oklahoma , who will administer the program locally. High Plains is partnering with the Cimarron County Ranchers Relief Committee, the Fellowship of Christian Farmers, and the Cimarron County Conservation District in the effort.

Ted Quaday, Farm Aid program director, said that this disaster is threatening the livelihood of Cimarron County farmers and ranchers.

Oklahoma is seeing one of its toughest winters in years and ranchers are working night and day to feed their livestock. This hay relief from Farm Aid will help them do that. Farm Aid stands with Oklahoma ranchers in their struggle, Quaday said.

The storm began on December 18, 2006 , and most of the region has had snow cover since then.

Since 1985, Farm Aid has raised awareness about the critical role of family farms and raised more than $29 million to support national, regional and local programs that promote good food and build and strengthen family farm food production.

Diann Adams, Chair of High Plains RC&D said that these funds will be used to assist Cimarron County producers by defraying a portion of trucking costs for hay being purchased or donated. Details of the program will be released to the producers in the next few days. She said, This support is much needed. It has been a great pleasure to work with the Farm Aid staff. They have responded quickly and we appreciate the opportunity to work with them, and we welcome them as a partner.

During the last eight years, High Plains RC&D has utilized over $9 million in grants and program monies to assist in the creation of $119 million of new and expanded businesses in the eight county region that it serves. High Plains RC&D is a 501 ( c ) (3) non-profit corporation that seeks to raise the standard of living through the proper utilization and development of natural resources. Individuals and companies can contribute to this effort or to the work of High Plains RC&D by calling (580) 735-2033, ext. 4. Individuals and companies may contribute to Farm Aid's Family Farm Disaster Fund, call 1-800-FARM-Aid or donate on line at www.farmaid.org.

Ranchers Relief Fund

Distribution Guidelines

High Plains RC&D Council


High Plains RC&D Council has received a limited amount of contributions that are to be used to assist farmers and ranchers in Cimarron County , Oklahoma , who have sustained losses during the storm events that began on December 18, 2006 and continuing after that. These contributions are to be used to help defray transportation costs of delivering hay to the farmers and ranchers. Funds are not available to purchase hay. The guidelines are as follows:

1. The eligibility period is from February 1, 2007 through February 28, 2007 , for producers purchasing hay or receiving donated hay for which they are responsible for paying trucking costs.

2. Ranchers should deliver copies of their invoices to the Cimarron County Conservation District Office in Boise City , one of the members of the Ranchers Relief Committee or mail to High Plains RC&D, Box 353 , Buffalo , Oklahoma , by March 26, 2007 , which is the deadline for being considered for this assistance.

3. Copies of the invoices should indicate the amount that was for trucking. Name, address, and social security numbers of the producer is required. If any producer receives more than $600, will receive a 1099(IRS Miscellaneous Income) form at the end of the year for the amount of assistance received.

4. The funds available will be split equitably between producers. Producers purchasing multiple loads may not receive assistance for all loads depending on the number of requests for assistance. Efforts will be made to insure that all those requesting assistance will receive some funds, although it may be only be a small amount.

5. For questions, call High Plains RC&D at (580) 735-2033 Ext. 4.