Gov. Kim Reynolds has allocated about $100 million of federal CARES Act funds to help farmers affected by the coronavirus pandemic. In a news release announcing the funds today, Reynolds said the pandemic, combined with the Aug. 10 derecho, “dealt a major blow to everything from the demand for ethanol to the supply of meat on grocery store shelves.” The governor said the assistance reflects the role agriculture plays in the state’s economic recovery. Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig said the CARES Act funding will help the agriculture sector respond to market disruptions and continue its recovery. Producers can apply for assistance for programs administered by the Iowa Economic Development Authority at iowabusinessrecovery.com beginning on Aug. 31, and can apply for department of agriculture-administered programs at iowaagriculture.gov/grants beginning today, Aug. 24. Programs that will be funded through the assistance are:
- $60 million — Iowa Livestock Producer Relief Fund.
- $15.5 million — State Biofuel Grant Program.
- $7 million — Renewable Fuel Retail Recovery Program.
- $6 million — Iowa Beginning Farmer Debt Relief Fund.
- $2 million — Meat Processing Development and Expansion Program.
- $500,000 — Farm Produce and Protein Program.
- Up to $9 million — Iowa Disposal Assistance Program.