LEWISTON – Laura Rand, executive director of USDA’s Farm Service Agency in Androscoggin/Sagadahoc counties, is reminding producers that the deadline to sign up for the Tree Assistance Program is Tuesday, May 31.

The program provides financial relief to owners of eligible trees, bushes, vines and forestland damaged by natural disasters.

Funding was authorized by the Military Construction and Emergency Hurricane Supplemental appropriations Act, 2005 (2005 Appropriations Act), and signed into law by President George Bush last October.

“Payments should begin in early June,” said Rand. “TAP is just one of several programs that USDA has available to help farmers recover from damage received as the result of natural disasters.”

For more information or to apply for assistance, tree owners should contact the staff at the local USDA Service Center or county office. Additional information is available on the Web site at: http://www.fsa.usda.gov.

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