Gov. Rick Snyder has approved loans to Michigan fruit farmers who sustained an estimated $210 million in losses following rough spring weather.
A one-time $15 million appropriation covering some costs for banks that offer loans to farmers and processors were among a number of bills signed Tuesday in Lansing.
Snyder calls crop losses from the abnormally warm temperatures in March and the following freeze-ups "the worst natural disaster to strike Michigan's agricultural industry in more than 50 years."
Estimates suggest a loss of 90 percent to apple and tart cherry crops, and 95 percent to the peach crop.
Snyder has also signed bills to increase the maximum penalty for first-degree child abuse to life in prison and 10 years for a first offense of second-degree child abuse.