ST. PAUL, Minn. - Gov. Tim Pawlenty says five counties in northwestern Minnesota have been designated as federal agriculture disaster areas after rainy and cold weather hurt harvests.
The designation makes farmers in Mahnomen, Becker, Clearwater, Norman and Polk counties eligible for emergency loans from the Farm Service Agency.
Farmers in those counties were hit by abnormally wet conditions and freezing temperatures during the 2008 sugar beet harvest.
According to a press release from Pawlenty's office, farmers can use the emergency loans to restore property, pay for production costs, cover essential living expenses, reorganize the farming operation or refinance debts.