AgGeorgia Farm Credit, a Georgia based agricultural lending cooperative, has announced that dividends totaling $13,572,002 have been declared by its Board of Directors, with receipt by members anticipated the first week of April. Over $652,000 of this total is going to members in Chattooga County and the counties bordering.

“With so many of our members still recovering from the weather events of last year, it is a great pleasure for our board and staff to be able to return our profits to our membership,” said AgGeorgia CEO Jack Drew.

This marks the 31 st consecutive year the cooperative has returned profits to its members through its Patronage Refund Program, with nearly $365 million in cash being paid out since.

The refund, from 2018 earnings, consists of more than $4 million in cash and over $9.5 million in allocated surplus, with the surplus portion to be used to maintain the capital position of the cooperative and returned to members at a later date.

“The patronage refund reduces our members’ cost of borrowing considerably, this year lowering the average member’s stated rate by 1.47%,” said AgGeorgia’s CFO Carrie McCall. “For every dollar of interest expense accrued by our borrowers in our general portfolio in 2018, 25 cents is being paid back to them.”