STATEHOUSE (Aug. 20, 2012) – State Sen. Sue Glick (R-LaGrange) recently joined fellow lawmakers at the annual Indiana Rural Caucus meeting for an agriculture update from industry leaders.
Glick said various presentations and discussions centered on providing emergency disaster assistance to Hoosier farmers. Now, all 92 counties in Indiana are eligible for low-interest loans following what’s become known as the worst drought in the state’s history.
“Agriculture is a vital part of not only the Indiana economy but our state’s heritage,” Glick said. “It is important for our legislators to understand the concerns of farmers and support them through this unprecedented disaster.”
At Thursday’s meeting, participating organizations detailed the drought’s impact. According to Indiana Corn Growers Association President Gary Lamie, current projections say Indiana produced 100 bushels of corn per acre this year while the national average is 123 bushels per acre. He said in some areas of the state, the production rate could be 85 bushels per acre or even lower.
The lack of rain has also affected other crops, including soybeans that become dormant without sufficient moisture, Indiana Soybean Alliance Vice President David Lowe said.
“It will be some time before we can fully measure the effects of this drought,” Glick said. “The General Assembly will continue to monitor the situation and assist our farmers in the best way possible.”
Other topics discussed included:
- the condition of Indiana’s livestock industry.
- the globalization of agriculture and its impact on state economy.
- state and federal efforts to support farmers.
Indiana’s Rural Caucus is a bi-partisan group of legislators from the State Senate and House of Representatives who work together to represent the interests of rural communities.