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5 counties get disaster designation

TRAVERSE CITY (AP) — Five Michigan counties have been declared federal disaster areas because of losses from heavy rains and high winds in the past year.

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue approved Antrim, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, Leelanau and Otsego counties for the designation.

It offers emergency loans to help with recovery needs such as replacing equipment or livestock, reorganizing a farming operation or refinancing debts.

Also eligible to seek assistance are producers in counties that are contiguous to those named as disaster areas. They include Benzie, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Crawford, Manistee, Missaukee, Montmorency, Oscoda, Roscommon and Wexford.

The application deadline is Feb. 25, 2020.

The U.S. Farm Service Agency will review the applications based on the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability.

More information is available online.