Agriculture

In 2012 and 2013, the Colorado agricultural industry was severely impacted by fires and floods. As the second largest contributor to the state’s economy, it was vital to the well-being of all Colorado citizens to keep our agricultural industry strong and vibrant. Federal Disaster Assistance funds were allocated to assist farmers and ranchers who were affected with recovering from these disasters. This program has completed and applications are no longer being accepted.

 

Agriculture Business Grant


This economic development grant was established to enable disaster impacted businesses remain viable and maintain jobs in the agriculture sector that is so critical to rural areas and Colorado as a whole. Based on documented damages or losses, farmers and ranchers received grant assistance to help them stay in business and retain employment in the impacted areas. Grants ranged from $15,000 to $150,000 and could be used to reimburse businesses for disaster-related expenses, replace lost facilities or equipment, or otherwise reinvest in their business.This program was managed in partnership with the Colorado Department of Agriculture and concluded in December of 2018.

Summary of the Disaster


Impacts

Barns, greenhouses, and outbuildings were destroyed or filled with debris and water resulting in unusable and unsafe structures

Equipment was destroyed or washed away

Fencing and corrals were destroyed, surveys were needed to re-establish property boundaries

Irrigation systems and ponds were no longer able to provide water to livestock and crops because pipes were uprooted and ponds were filled with debris

Hay that was stacked and ready to sell was damaged and could no longer be sold or used to feed livestock

Surviving livestock had to be relocated to higher ground. Many livestock died in the flood or had serious health conditions afterwards and had to be put down resulting in unplanned costs and additional loss of income for the ranchers

Debris and silt deposited on land created huge holes and unfarmable fields, which required removal and land leveling to bring the land back into production

Pastureland and crops were destroyed

Accomplishments

68 Agricultural Businesses received disaster recovery assistance

181 seasonal and full-time jobs were retained or created

Pastureland is viable and productive again

New or improved equipment = less time fixing equipment and more time in the field harvesting

Businesses have been stabilized and as a result will continue operating into the future

Construction Projects

New fencing and corrals

Irrigation pond cleanout

Barn repairs and construction

Excavation and land-leveling

Riverbank stabilization

Debris Removal

Pasture Restoration

Access road repairs

Pond/waterway work

Grants by County


County Grants by County # of Businesses Assisted
Weld $2,568,711 23
Larimer $2,188,304 19
Boulder $1,751,606 17
All Other Counties $738,583 7
Grant Total $7,247,204 66

Profiles


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From one of our farmers

“If not for this grant, I shudder to think where we would be today. I expect our only alternatives would have been to sell out at a low damaged property price or to take on some massive loans that I\'m not sure we would have qualified for. I am very thankful that this grant exists as not only is it helping us, but I see how much it benefits my neighbors as well.”

View Before and After photo gallery.

Contact


Please contact Stephanie Casias with the Department of Local Affairs at 303-864-7893 or email agdisastergrant@state.co.us for past information on this grant program.