Officials Recommend Expansion Of Kansas Drought Disaster

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - State officials want more than three dozen additional counties added to the state's drought disaster declaration.

State Emergency Board chairman Adrian Polansky says he's recommending Gov. Sam Brownback request 37 more counties be put on the federal list. Assessments show those counties will all see at least a 30-percent loss of production in one or more crops due to extreme heat and dry conditions.

The designation would qualify producers for emergency federal loans. The USDA already declared a federal disaster in 82 Kansas counties.

The added counties would be Atchison, Brown, Chase, Cherokee, Clay, Cloud, Dickinson, Doniphan, Douglas, Ellis, Ellsworth, Franklin, Geary, Jackson, Jefferson, Jewell, Johnson, Leavenworth, Lincoln, Marion, Miami, Mitchell, Morris, Nemaha, Osage, Osborne, Ottawa, Pottawatomie, Republic, Riley, Rush, Russell, Saline, Shawnee, Smith, Wabaunsee and Wyandotte.

In addition, Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kansas, launched efforts to ensure Kansas farmers and ranchers have access to all available assistance due to severe drought across the nation and much of the state.

“Lack of rainfall and high temperatures has had a devastating impact on the corn and soybean crops in Kansas,” Roberts said. “Ranchers in Kansas are also facing severe hardship due to a lack of available feed caused by the drought. Nearly every county is affected by these severe conditions.”

The USDA has allowed emergency haying and grazing of CRP lands to 91 out of 105 Kansas counties.

Roberts has created a page on his website dedicated entirely to drought resources. A link to it is below.


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