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Governor Signs $75 Million Drought Relief Grant Program for Small Ag Businesses

Governor Signs $75 Million Drought Relief Grant Program for Small Ag Businesses

Governor Newsom has signed the California Small Agricultural Business Drought Relief Grant Program bill, that will provide much needed relief for ag businesses during this historic drought crisis.

“With drought threatening California’s agricultural economy, businesses and jobs within our rural ag communities, this landmark $75 million program will help provide necessary drought relief to small businesses, that are vital links in keeping the Sacramento Valley’s ag supply chain connected,” said California Rice Commission President & CEO Tim Johnson.

The program offers $60,000 – $100,000 grants to qualified small agricultural businesses including those that support the California rice industry. The grants will be open to, ag aircraft businesses, ag suppliers, ag service providers, ag trucking companies, rice dryers and mills. The program also allocates 20 percent of the funds for small or socially disadvantaged farmers.

Based on the amount of loss in gross revenue or gross profit in 2022 compared to the last normal year of planting in 2019 of at least 30 percent, qualified business of 100 or fewer employees would be able to receive grants to offset losses related to the drought. 

“We especially want to show our appreciation to California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) Secretary Karen Ross for her leadership in creating this new drought relief program and for her continued support for California’s agriculture and the farm economy throughout this crisis,” said Johnson. 

The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) will conduct outreach prior to the sign up for the grant. Look for information on the program in the fall. The CRC will work with our partners to broadly communicate program applications. 

A coalition including the Northern California Water Association, California Warehouse Association, California Agricultural Aircraft Association, California Tomato Growers, Ag Council of California and Western Plant Health Association joined the CRC in this effort.

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