Assistance for Victims of Weather Related Disasters
Res #: 9-06M
Responses Received: No
Resolution No. 9-06M
WHEREAS, drastic weather conditions (flooding, drought, frost, etc.) to seeded and unseeded land resulting in negative economic margins in both urban and rural communities;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that Saskatchewan Crop Insurance dispense the total of $50 per acre payout without deductions (i.e. 5% deductible, seeding intensity and insurable intensities); and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that SARM lobby the Provincial Government for an additional $25 per acre disaster payment to all Saskatchewan producers affected by weather related disasters; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that SARM and the Provincial Government lobby the Federal Government for additional weather related disaster funding for 2006 and beyond.
Response from Honourable Mark Wartman, Minister of Agriculture and Food:
The unseeded acres provision in the crop insurance program is available to all farmers participating in the crop insurance program.
The seeding intensity is used to calculate the number of acres the farmer would normally seed. The five per cent deductible is used to account for normal year to year variations in seeded acres. Crop insurance should not be paid on unseeded acres due to normal year to year variations. The insurance intensity is used to account for the amount of insurance the crop insurance customer normally purchases. Coverage can only be offered on what the crop insurance customer normally purchases. If they only insure 50 per cent of their eligible crops, they can only receive 50 per cent of the payment. To do otherwise would be unfair to farmers who insured 100 per cent of their eligible crops. All of these components are required to offer unseeded acres insurance and to be able to offer an actuarially sound program.
The best long-term solution to addressing weather related disasters is to ensure we have an appropriate crop insurance program and an appropriate disaster program that can deal with any situations beyond the scope of crop insurance (and Canadian Agricultural Income Stabilization program). We will have to wait and see whether the proposed disaster program will provide additional coverage for weather disasters.
The federal government also wants the province to 60:40 cost-share any new disaster program. This is not acceptable to Saskatchewan, as traditionally, disaster assistance has been funded almost exclusively by the federal government.
It is also important that additional funding for on-farm livestock water development be available to help producers address water access.