Norwalk Reflector: Ag-LINK program reopened for Ohio farmers impacted by floods
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Ag-LINK program reopened for Ohio farmers impacted by floods

By Norwalk Reflector staff • Jul 9, 2019 at 3:00 PM

COLUMBUS  — Due to the extreme weather that has taken a devastating toll on parts of Ohio, Treasurer Robert Sprague on Monday announced he has re-opened the application period for the Ag-LINK program.

Through this round of applications, farm operators and agribusiness owners based in Ohio can receive a 2 percent interest rate reduction on loans up to $150,000. Ag-LINK can provide significant savings and much needed relief to farmers and agribusinesses impacted by recent storms and floods.

“Agriculture is the backbone of Ohio’s economy,” Sprague said. “But with heavy rain and floods wreaking havoc on fields across the state, we want to make every opportunity available to help offset some of the inevitable losses that come with this level of severe weather. The Ag-LINK program can help alleviate some of the borrowing costs for farm operators as they work their way through this extremely difficult growing season.”

The Ohio Treasurer’s office administers the Ag-LINK program to help Ohio farm operators and other agricultural businesses finance the up-front operating costs for feed, seed, fertilizer, fuel, and other flood related costs. Ag-LINK provides an interest rate reduction on agriculture business operation loans at eligible banks and farm credit lenders.

The application period will remain open until Nov. 15. Farm operators and agribusinesses who previously received loans through Ag-LINK earlier this year may be eligible during this application period if they did not request the $150,000 program limit.

Those interested in Ag-LINK should contact a participating bank or Farm Credit Service lender to begin the loan application process.

In addition to the Ag-LINK program, farmers and agribusinesses impacted by severe weather may be eligible for loans through two other economic development programs offered by the treasurer’s office. The ReEnergize Ohio four-year program provides qualified small business owners with up to a 3 percent interest rate reduction on new or existing small business loans up to $550,000. These loans can assist with costs related to the repair of storm-damaged buildings and equipment. Additionally, some small business owners may qualify for the GrowNOW two-year program, which offers up to a 3 percent interest rate reduction on loans up to $400,000 and is renewable. Under GrowNOW, businesses must commit to creating or retaining at least one full-time or two part-time jobs in Ohio for every $50,000 borrowed.

More information about ReEnergize Ohio and GrowNOW can be found on the Ohio Treasurer’s website.

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