On December 13, 2021, the Oregon State Legislature successfully concluded a one-day special session that included much needed financial assistance to farmers, ranchers, and irrigation districts deeply impacted by drought and other disasters in the past year. This funding will help the hardest hit sectors of Oregon’s agricultural community by providing direct payments to irrigators, funding for well deepening, financial assistance to several irrigation districts with federal payments ($10 million), and other assistance to agricultural entities to ensure they can continue to operate.
The package also sets up a forgivable loan program, the Oregon Agricultural Disaster Relief Fund, with $40 million to be administered by the Oregon Department of Agriculture (SB 892). The 2nd special session also included $25 million for enforcement of illegal cannabis operations (SB 893), provisions to extend rental assistance and eviction moratoriums (SB 891), and other unrelated funding provisions contained in SB 5561.
OWRC coordinated with a coalition of agricultural associations in support of the disaster assistance package and looks forward to its successful implementation. “Oregon Agriculture Supports the Agricultural Natural Disaster Package” – December 10, 2021 Letter
“Help to Farmers and Ranchers Is On The Way From Drought Package” – December 13, 2021 Senate Republican Office Press Release
“Senate Passes Drought Relief Package to Support Rural Communities” – December 13, 2021 Senate Democrat Majority Office Press Release