USDA’s Farm Service Agency significantly reduced the number of civil rights complaints in fiscal year 2010 to the lowest level in the agency’s history.  At the same time FSA increased the number of loans and dollar amount obligated to programs dedicated to minority and women farmers for fiscal year 2011.  Out of the nearly 2-million producers the agency has served, 37 complaints were received.  Over the last fiscal year, FSA’s loan division conducted business with 70-thousand borrowers and provided support to 1.9-million producers through its farm programs.
FSA Administrator Bruce Nelson says – the loan numbers reflect the significant progress we have made in the effort to equally serve all eligible applicants. Funds obligated for minority and women farmers increased in fiscal year 2011 by 9 percent over the same period last year, to 554-million dollars as of September 27, 2011. The largest increase has come in guaranteed farm ownership loans.
In addition, the Farm Service Agency reports an overall improvement in its loan portfolio. Losses in the direct loan program fell to 1.2 percent, its second lowest level since 1986. Delinquency rates for fiscal year 2010 under the guaranteed loan program were at 1.69 percent, the second lowest since 1995. Foreclosure rates remain low with just 64 completed in fiscal year 2010. That represents less than one-tenth of one percent of the agency’s direct loan caseload.
NAFB News Service