Interest break extended on CAIS repayments

An interest-free period has been extended for farmers in six provinces to pay back overpayments they received through CAIS or AgriStability.

Interest will not be charged on outstanding overpayments until Jan. 1, 2010, a one-year extension from the previously announced date of Jan. 1, 2009.

Monday’s announcement applies only to eligible farmers in British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador and Yukon, where the federal government currently administers AgriStability and CAIS.

“The federal government recognizes that repaying overpayments may pose a challenge for some producers,” the program administration said when it announced the previous interest break.

A CAIS administration spokesperson said Tuesday that the extra year’s extension is meant to help farmers who are still dealing with overpayments, mainly through the old CAIS (Canadian Agricultural Income Stabilization) program that AgriStability replaced.

About 200 farmers across the six provinces and Yukon have received overpayments through AgriStability since the program began last year, staff said.

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