Theodore Roosevelt, 1903

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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Panhandle Wildfire Relief Fund -- Let's Help!


Several counties in the Texas Panhandle have experienced catastrophic wildfires in March. Homes, barns, fences, livestock and, most tragically, several lives have been lost. In an effort to help those who have been affected by this event, we have developed the Panhandle Wildfire Relief Fund.

Click here for details of the relief fund and how to apply for assistance.
This program will collect and distribute monetary contributions only.

If you prefer to pay by check, it should be made out and sent to:

Texas Farm Bureau Agriculture Research and Education Foundation
Panhandle Wildfire Committee
P.O. Box 2689
Waco, TX 76702-2689
Attn: Cyndi Gerik

UPDATED MARCH 22:

For general questions about donations or needs, call 806-677-5628.

Livestock Supply Points will be closing soon.

Gray County
Clyde Carruth Pavilion
301 Bull Barn Drive
Pampa, TX

Contact: Mike Jeffcoat, CEA
Office: 806-669-8033

This location will suspend daily operations on March 24. Supplies will be loaded by appointment only by calling 806-669-8033.

Hemphill County
Canadian AH&N Ranch Supply
100 Hackberry Trail
Canadian, TX

Contact: Andy Holloway, CEA
Office: 806-323-9114

This location plans to close in early April. They will stop accepting donations of materials and hay on March 24. Financial donations can still be made.

Lipscomb County
Lipscomb County Show Facility
202 West Main Street
Lipscomb, TX

Contact: J.R. Sprague, CEA
Office: 806-862-4601

This location will stop taking supplies on March 24. Anything further should be scheduled by calling 806-862-4601. Ranchers donating or picking up supplies may have to load and unload it themselves.

For monetary donations, make checks payable to the bold entry and send checks to the address indicated:

Lefors Volunteer Fire and EMS
Lefors Credit Union
Attn: Carole Watson
P.O. Box 425
Lefors, TX 79054 

Canadian Volunteer Fire Department
Happy State Bank
Attn: Scott Brewster
P.O. Box 300
Canadian, TX 79014
 

Lipscomb County Firefighters Association
FirstBank Southwest-Booker Branch
Attn: Pam Sanders
P.O. Box 636
Booker, TX 79005


Wildfire Relief

• USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) can help landowners with wildfire recovery and restoration. The NRCS can provide land management advice, and in some cases, financial assistance, to install measures that reduce post-fire damage and aid in the rehabilitation process. To learn more, click here.
The USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) offers disaster assistance and low-interest loan programs to assist agricultural producers in their recovery efforts following wildfires or other qualifying natural disasters. To learn more, click here.
• For more details and questions, contact your local FSA office. To find your local FSA county office, visit www.offices.usda.gov.
For questions you may have, please review the following resources:

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension has a Disaster Education Network with many resources and a checklist of considerations for post-fire management.
Texas Animal Health Commission website has been updated with relief information: http://www.tahc.texas.gov/emergency/index.html.

Livestock Indemnity Program
The Livestock Indemnity Program is authorized by the Agricultural Act of 2014 to provide benefits to farmers and ranchers for livestock deaths in excess of normal mortality caused by adverse weather or disasters.
For more details, contact your local FSA office. Find your local FSA county office here. To learn more about FSA disaster assistance programs, visit www.disaster.fsa.usda.gov.
Texas Department of Agriculture Hay Hotline

The Texas Department of Agriculture Hay Hotline helps farmers and ranchers locate forage and hay supplies for sale. If you need hay or would like to donate hay, visit www.gotexan.org/hayhotlinehome.aspx or call 877-429-1998.
Texas Hay Import Precautions:

Various types of hay can be carriers of pests and diseases that are harmful to other crops. Some hay shipments containing corn, broomcorn, sorghums and sudan grass may have restrictions on entry into Texas. Also, hay imported from fire ant-infested areas of other states will be limited to distribution in fire ant-infested areas of Texas. For more information about restrictions on hay movement, please contact the TDA Agriculture and Consumer Protection Division at 800-835-5832.
Carcass disposal

For questions about carcass disposal, call the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) at 800-832-8224.
Lost or Found Livestock

If you find cattle or other livestock with official identificationdocument the number, location of the animal(s) and call the Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) at 512-719-0733 or 806-354-9335. TAHC will contact the owner.
If you find stray cattle that have a brand, call Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association at 817-332-7064 for brand identification.

If cattle have strayed onto your property, you must report them to the sheriff’s office in the county you are located in within five days of discovery to be eligible for reasonable payment for maintenance of or damages caused by the estray livestock.

For more information regarding Texas’ estray laws, visit Texas Agriculture Code, Chapter 142.
Texas Department of Agriculture STAR Fund

If you are interested in giving to the TDA STAR Fund (State of Texas Agriculture Relief Fund), visit the STAR Fund home page.
Reporting Losses: Affected Ranchers

Affected ranchers are being asked to call their AgriLife extension offices with any reports of dead or injured cattle. Office numbers of affected counties are:
  • Gray County (Pampa), 806-669-8033 
  • Hemphill County (Canadian), 806-323-9114 
  • Lipscomb County (Lipscomb), 806-862-4601 
  • Ochiltree County (Perryton), 806-435-4501 
  • Roberts County (Miami), 806-868-3191 
  • Wheeler County (Wheeler), 806-826-5243
Resources for other states affected by wildfires

Colorado:

Checks can be made payable to Colorado Farm Bureau FoundationCash and credit card payments are being accepted at this time. Please note “Disaster Fund-CO Wildfire” in the memo line on the check.

Cash and checks can be sent to:

Colorado Farm Bureau Foundation
Attn: Disaster Fund
9177 E. Mineral Circle
Centennial, CO 80112
Kansas:

For those wanting to donate hay or money, Kansas Farm Bureau encourages people to contact the Kansas Livestock Association at 785-273-5115. Checks can be mailed to the Kansas Livestock Foundation at 6031 SW 37th St., Topeka, KS 66614. “Fire relief fund” should be written in the memo line.
Kansas Farm Bureau is working with the Kansas Livestock Association (KLA) as they organize hay and fencing material donations for delivery to affected areas in Kansas.

To make in-kind donations, call KLA at 785-273-5115. Cash donations will be made through the Kansas Livestock Foundation (KLF), KLA’s charitable arm. Funds generated through donations to the Kansas Livestock Foundation will be used to support ranchers impacted by the fires. A donation form can be found here.
Ashland Veterinary Center is coordinating livestock needs, tanks, portable corrals, fencing materials and personnel. Their support is much appreciated. Contact them at 620-635-2641 or feel free to call the KLA office at 785-273-5115.

Oklahoma:

Oklahoma Farm Bureau has partnered with Love’s Travel Stops and Farm Credit Associations of Oklahoma to fund relief for fire victims.

The three organizations have furnished gift cards for fuel to those transporting donated hay to the affected area.

Farm Credit Associations of Oklahoma also will provide 0 percent interest agricultural operating loans for those directly impacted by the fires.

If interested in donating additional funds, please contact the Oklahoma Farm Bureau office at 405-530-2681.
OKC Cattlemen

If you would like to donate to this relief effort, you can do so by mail or online. Make checks payable to Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Foundation and put “Fire Relief” in the memo line and send to P.O. Box 82395, Oklahoma City, OK 73148. To donate online, visit www.okcattlemen.org.
If you would like to donate hay or trucking services for hay, you can do so by contacting either the Harper County Extension office at 580-735-2252 or Buffalo Feeders at 580-727-5530 to make arrangements or provide trucking services.

PLEASE HELP! 

If anything, please share this information.

Friends, I cut and pasted the information above in an effort to get the links right so that we can go to where they're supposed to lead us. I hope they all work as they're supposed to.

While I haven't heard about this on the news, any media, I know we can get the word out. We need to help those who have lost everything. So please, share this, forward this information, tell a friend that there are American ranch and farm families in need as a result of this horrible fire.

While I thank God that my wife and only came close to losing everything in a wildfire in 2015 but didn't, I know first hand how people in this situation need help, need information, need to put their lives back in order as well as can be expected. 

So please, let's help.

Thank you, and God Bless you.

Tom Correa
The American Cowboy Chronicles


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