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USDA grants governors drought declaration request
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TOPEKA – U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack notified Kansas Governor Sam Brownback Tuesday he has granted the Governor’s request for the USDA to issue a drought disaster declaration for 21 Kansas counties as well as 18 contiguous counties.
“This is good news for farmers in Kansas Counties experiencing production losses caused by drought, wildfires, and high winds.  I appreciate the Secretary and USDA’s quick response to my request,” Gov. Brownback said.  “This is worse than previous droughts I’ve seen during a lifetime in agriculture.  It already is affecting how farmers and ranchers are doing business – and that in turn will quickly impact local businesses and communities.  It will take a great deal of time and rain to reverse the impact of this drought.” 
Declaring these county agricultural disasters makes qualified farmers in both primary and contiguous counties eligible for emergency loans administered by USDA’s Farm Service Agency, as well as any other aid that may be available through the Supplemental Revenue Assistance payments (SURE) Program.
The 21 counties included in the federal declaration are Finney, Gove, Grant, Greeley, Hamilton, Haskell, Kearny, Lane, Logan, Meade, Morton, Ness, Scott, Seward, Sheridan, Sherman, Stanton, Stevens, Thomas, Wallace, and Wichita.
The 18 contiguous counties included in the federal declaration are Cheyenne, Clark, Decatur, Ellis, Ford, Graham, Gray, Hodgeman, Norton, Pawnee, Rawlins, Rush and Trego.
Kansas farmers who believe they may qualify for assistance should contact their local FSA offices for further information.