CHEYENNE, Wyo. – Sixteen Wyoming counties are now designated as primary natural disaster areas due to drought. Governor Matt Mead requested these designations and the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack, has signed off on the designation for 16 counties with 6 others qualifying for assistance because they are contiguous to the primary counties.
Governor Mead’s request is that all counties in Wyoming receive a drought disaster declaration, except for Teton County, which had not suffered grazing loss and dryland hay loss in excess of the disaster threshold. More Wyoming counties are likely to receive primary designation as federal officials review information related to the drought.
“This drought is not letting up and disaster assistance is one way to provide help,” Governor Mead said. “Yesterday, I toured areas impacted by wildfires and it is clear that conditions in Wyoming are as dry as they have been in years.”
The federal drought disaster declaration makes agricultural operators eligible for assistance from the Farm Service Agency. The producer has to meet eligibility requirements and the assistance includes emergency loans. Local Farm Service Agency offices can provide more information to agriculture operators.
The counties that are presently designated as primary natural disaster areas due to drought are: Hot Springs, Laramie, Carbon, Sweetwater, Uinta, Lincoln, Sublette, Fremont, Albany, Converse, Platte, Goshen, Campbell, Crook, Niobrara and Weston.
Those that currently qualify as contiguous counties are: Natrona, Washakie, Park, Teton, Sheridan and Johnson.
Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Tim Johnson (D-SD) today announced that U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack is relaxing regulations in order for livestock producers to access feed. The decision follows Johnson’s recent request for USDA to ease restrictions on the Conservation Reservation Program wetland and farmable wetland acres.
Also today, Johnson announced that USDA has designated 25 South Dakota counties as primary natural disaster areas. USDA also designated 14 SD Counties as contiguous disaster areas.
“I applaud Secretary Vilsack for taking action that will help South Dakota producers now get access to feed for their livestock. Using his administrative authority to ease restrictions on CRP emergency haying and grazing is crucial,” said Johnson. “With so many areas of our state battling this drought, I am also pleased that USDA has designated many of our counties as disaster areas so they will be able to access important assistance.”
USDA announced that the following counties are designated primary natural disaster areas: Bennett, Bon Homme, Butte, Charles Mix, Clay, Custer, Davison, Douglas, Fall River, Gregory, Haakon, Hanson, Hutchinson, Jackson, Lawrence, Lincoln, McCook, Meade, Pennington, Shannon, Todd, Tripp, Turner, Union and Yankton.
USDA also announced that the following counties are contiguous disaster areas: Aurora, Brule, Dewey, Harding, Jones, Lake, Lyman, Mellette, Miner, Minnehaha, Perkins, Sanborn, Stanley and Ziebach.
Source: WY Governor Matt Mead & SD Senator Tim Johnson
Posted by Russell Nemetz