State Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) represents parts of four counties: Milwaukee, Waukesha, Racine, and Walworth. Her Senate District 28 includes New Berlin, Franklin, Greendale, Hales Corners, Muskego, Waterford, Big Bend, the town of Vernon and parts of Greenfield, East Troy, and Mukwonago. Senator Lazich has been in the Legislature for more than a decade. She considers herself a tireless crusader for lower taxes, reduced spending and smaller government.
Last week, the United States Department of Agriculture approved our request to declare 24 Wisconsin counties as natural disaster areas. A freezing, thawing, and refreezing cycle, combined with excessive rain and snow, resulted in crop losses ranging from 30 to 70 percent in affected areas.
The weather was particularly devastating for the alfalfa and winter wheat. Farmers have eight months to apply for emergency loans through the Farm Service Agency. Our farmers now have the necessary resources to help them deal with crop loss. Additional resources for affected farmers are available through Ready Wisconsin and the Farmer to Farmer program.
The Farmer to Farmer program connects farmers in need of feed for their livestock with farmers who sell feed. The program is provided by UW-Extension and was established last summer in response to the drought. The database is provided free of charge and can be used to search for hay, alfalfa haylage, corn silage, high moisture corn, corn grain, or other forages.
I thank the USDA for its quick response. My hope is that these resources will minimize the economic impact of the natural disaster for Wisconsin’s farming community.
The state partnered with the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association to produce and distribute a brief radio address once a week. Audio files and a written transcript of this radio address can be accessed on http://www.wi-broadcasters.org and http://walker.wi.gov/Weekly-Radio-Addresses.