U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., joined 41 senators to urge U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue to provide relief to farmers during COVID-19 closures.


These senators wrote a letter that calls on the administration to make temporary flexibilities on Farm Service Agency loans permanent for the duration of COVID-19 shutdowns and to ensure adequate access to credit during this period of market uncertainty.


“Americans always depend on our nation’s farmers to grow the food, fuel and fiber that we all need, but that reliance becomes much more pronounced in times of crisis,” the senators wrote in their letter. “… We urge you to consider making emergency measures such as deadline extensions, loan payment deferrals, payment forbearance and a full suspension of all current and pending foreclosure actions effective for the duration of the pandemic and subsequent economic recovery.”


The letter stated these measures are critical to avoiding disruption in the country’s food supply chain. The senators acknowledged the announcement made by the FSA on March 26, which provided flexibility for those repaying farm loans. The senators said these actions will help alleviate cash flow concerns as producers make important business decisions for their operations.


The senators who wrote this letter to Perdue were a mix of both Democrats and Republicans from Midwestern states, as well as Arizona, Hawaii, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, Oregon and Virginia.