Designations made on April 28, 2003 with disaster dates in parentheses were:

Alpine and Lake counties (March 15, 2002 through Dec. 31, 2000); Amador County (Jan. 1, 2001 through Dec. 31, 2002); Sacramento County (Jan. 1, 2002 through Dec. 20, 2002), and Yuba County (April 1, 2002 through Nov. 30, 2002).

Designations made on April 30 and May 1, 2003 were: Alameda and Contra Costa (March 1, 2002 through Dec. 31, 2002); El Dorado and Placer (Jan. 1, 2001 through Dec. 31, 2002); Lake (March 15, 2002 through Dec. 31, 2002), and Sutter (Jan. 1, 2002 through Dec. 10, 2002).

These 11 designations make all qualified farm operators eligible for low-interest emergency loans from the Farm Service Agency (FSA).

Farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration to apply for the loans to help cover part of their actual losses. Producers should file applications right away as signup is expected to end in early June.

Designations for reasons other than drought include Tehama County for rain and high winds that occurred from Dec. 13, 2002 through Dec. 27, 2002. Also eligible under the same designation are the contiguous counties of Butte, Glenn, Mendocino, Plumas, Shasta and Trinity.

Sutter County was designated as a primary disaster area for rain and high winds from Dec. 13, 2002 through Dec. 16, 2002. Also eligible under the same designation are the contiguous counties of Butte, Colusa, Placer, Sacramento, Yolo and Yuba.