Analysis of loan totals granted to socially disadvantaged farmers
USDA figures also show that the delinquent debt of socially disadvantaged farmers is reduced to $ 414.9 million. Overall, the USDA shows that among all borrowers, there is approximately $ 2.42 billion in past due debt for both direct and guaranteed FSA loans.
The language of the invoice, however, does not specify overdue debt. After repeatedly asking Congressional staff how the language specifics work, Senate Agriculture Committee staff said, “The wording says USDA will pay up to 120% of the outstanding amount. the debt of socially disadvantaged farmers from January 1. This means all direct and secured USDA loans – not just delinquent loans. “
The wording also indicates that the secretary of agriculture would use “the sums necessary” to pay for the provision, which the Congressional Budget Office had set at $ 4 billion.
All socially disadvantaged farmers’ debts as of December 31, 2020 show that socially disadvantaged farmers with current loans had $ 2.67 billion on the books, as well as $ 414.9 million in past due debt, reaching $ 3.1 billion. dollars in outstanding loans for socially disadvantaged farmers. With the additional 20% added for tax liability, that’s about $ 3.7 billion.
Including $ 2.42 billion in past due debt, the USDA has approximately $ 31.7 billion in outstanding FSA loans and loan guarantees to 144,802 borrowers at the end of 2020. A concern raised by Republican members of the House Agriculture Committee is that if the provision offering aid only to minority farmers ends up being challenged in court that the USDA could be required to repay all those loans.
The dollar figures involved include another caveat. The USDA does not report how many loans to socially disadvantaged farmers went to white women farmers. The American Rescue Plan uses the 1990 definition for socially disadvantaged farmers, who are defined as Blacks or African Americans, American Indians or Native Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and Hawaiians or Pacific Islanders. . In 1992, especially for credit issues, the definition of socially disadvantaged people was changed to also include women farmers. Under the American Rescue Plan, they are not eligible for this loan relief.
As DTN also pointed out over the past week, a few states have used loans for socially disadvantaged farmers much more than others. Oklahoma is by far the largest state for FSA loans for socially disadvantaged farmers. Data for fiscal year 2020 – which was just released this week by the FSA (after harassing the DTN) – shows Oklahoma had 1,189 farmers receiving loans for socially disadvantaged farmers totaling $ 176.8 million. dollars. Arkansas was the second highest state with $ 94.9 million in loans, followed by Texas with $ 88.9 million and Louisiana with $ 65.9 million.
Chris Clayton can be reached at [email protected]
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