July 15, 2003
Clarification on LMAAP Payments
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) recently issued a notice to county offices with instructions on how to process applications and payments during the final weeks of the Lamb Meat Adjustment Assistance Program (LMAAP).
The Year 4 marketing period for ewe, feeder and slaughter lambs is slated to end on July 31, 2003, with applications due in FSA offices by Aug. 15, 2003. As of June 9, FSA offices will continue to accept applications but will not process checks/payments until all applications through the end of the program have been submitted.
State FSA offices must submit all county FSA reports to the national office by the middle of September. Once all applications have been received by the national FSA office, payment rates will be announced.
Producers and feeders can be assured that applications made in June and July will be paid. However, payments will be delayed until late September. In the event that FSA receives more lambs applied for than there is available funding, payments will be pro-rated to a lesser amount in order to keep the program within its allotted budget. The FSA notice can be viewed at ftp://ftp.fsa.usda.gov/public/notices/LD_538.pdf
?When the LMAAP was initiated in August of 2000, feeder and slaughter lambs sold prior to that date missed out on the first year programs. However, since most of those producers are still on the same marketing schedule, they will be the last lambs to qualify in 2003,? stated American Sheep Industry Association President Guy Flora. ?In the end, the schedule becomes fair to all producers.?
Flora also mentioned that a common question being asked by producers is the status of an ASI request to extend the programs an additional year.
?To date, our request has been supported by 23 U.S. senators as well as several U.S. representatives,? said Flora. ?We recognize that in the severe drought areas in 2002, many producers were unable to keep or purchase replacement ewe lambs because of lack of feed, and those producers should work with their state sheep association to support the extension request.?