The U.S. Department of Agriculture is urging producers affected by floods or tornadoes in several states in the Midwest to immediately apply for aid in presidentially declared disaster areas.

“USDA is encouraging residents and business owners to immediately apply for funding to help them to begin their recovery from these devastating storms,” says Thomas Dorr, Agriculture Department under secretary for Rural Development. “Rural Development has a number of programs that can be used by citizens to help them get back on their feet. These programs can literally assist in building a community from the ground up and we stand ready to help our fellow citizens in the affected states rebuild their communities and their lives.”

USDA Rural Development has grant and loan funds available to rural communities for housing and shelter, public safety, health care and community facilities and business recovery assistance.

For further information on rural programs, contact your local USDA Rural Development office or visit USDA’s Web site.