EXECUTIVE ORDER D-1-99


WHEREAS, on December 20, 1998, a State of Emergency was proclaimed in Fresno, Kern, Madera and Tulare counties because of the sub-arctic freezing temperatures that virtually destroyed all citrus crops in those counties; and

WHEREAS, on January 7, 1999, Governor Gray Davis proclaimed a State of Emergency for Monterey and Kings counties, because of the harsh effects of the sub-arctic freezing temperatures on both citrus and floral crops in those counties; and

WHEREAS, the California Department of Food and Agriculture estimates damage to citrus growers in the six counties in which a State of Emergency was proclaimed to exceed $652 million; and

WHEREAS, thousands of growers and more than 100 agricultural packing-houses face serious financial hardship because of the effects of the freeze and "El Nino" natural disasters of 1998; and

WHEREAS, without federal disaster assistance, small farmers and small agriculture-related businesses in these, and other potentially affected counties, have no other resources available to them to mitigate the effects of these disasters; and

WHEREAS, the Department of Finance has determined that $590,000 in the Small Business Expansion Fund (Fund 918) is continuously appropriated and authorized for disaster purposes under the Corporations Code Section 14037.5; and

WHEREAS, the California Trade and Commerce Agency, through its Office of Small Business, has effectively provided financial assistance to many small farmers and small businesses in past natural disasters through its disaster loan guarantee program;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GRAY DAVIS, Governor of the State of California, by virtue of the power and authority vested in me by the Constitution and statutes of the State of California, do hereby issue this order to become effective immediately, authorizing the California Trade and Commerce Agency, with cooperation from the Department of Finance, to activate the disaster loan guarantee program: