Invasive species to be discussed

AGRICULTURE NOTES

September 30, 2007

The Carroll County Forestry Board will hold an Invasive Species Workshop from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 13 at Bear Branch Nature Center, 300 John Owings Road, Westminster.

Invasive plants can alter the ecosystem and wildlife habitats. Participants can learn to identify and control non-native plants with experienced forestry volunteers.

The cost is $10. Participants should take a lunch; drinks and snacks will be supplied. Dress for outdoor activities.

Registration is required by Friday at 410-848-9290 or dbaker@dnr.state.md.us.

Farmers eligible for disaster relief

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently designated Carroll County a natural disaster area because of losses caused by the spring and summer drought.

All qualified farm operators are eligible for emergency loans if they meet eligibility requirements. Farmers have until May 12, eight months from the date of the declaration, to apply for loans to help cover part of their losses.

The Farm Service Agency will take into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. The agency has programs to help eligible farmers recover from adversity.

Information and applications can be obtained from the local USDA service center or at http:--disaster.fsa. usda.gov.

Loans for women and minorities

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Farm Service Agency has announced that female and minority farmers interested in buying and operating family-size farms might be eligible for FSA loans.

The loans are the same as those for other borrowers, as are the eligibility requirements.

Applicants must be primarily and directly engaged in farming or ranching on family-size operations.

In addition to being members of a socially disadvantaged group, applicants must:

Have a satisfactory history of meeting credit obligations.

Have sufficient education, experience or training to manage a business successfully.

Be a citizen of the United States (or a legal resident alien), Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa or certain former Pacific Island Trust Territories.

Be unable to obtain credit elsewhere at reasonable rates and terms to meet needs.

Be legally able to incur loan obligations.

Information: 410-848-2780.

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