WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has authorized emergency grazing on Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) lands located in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas to help ranchers impacted by the wildfires.
“Ranchers need every available acre of grass to feed the surviving cattle,” said Sen. Moran. “Allowing emergency grazing of CRP acres will give producers additional options as they search for grassland for their livestock. I appreciate USDA’s continued attention on relief efforts and will continue to urge them to utilize every tool available to assist families devastated by the fires.”
USDA Acting Deputy Secretary Michael L. Young issued a memorandum authorizing the emergency grazing of cattle by ranchers. Click here to read the details of the authorization.
Sen. Moran recently met with Acting USDA Secretary Michael Young to discuss the challenges facing farmers and ranchers impacted by the wildfires.
According to USDA, estimated damages thus far for Kansas:
- Counties affected include Clark, Comanche, Ellis, Ellsworth, Ford, Hodgeman, Kiowa, Lane, Lincoln, Meade, Ness, Russell and Seward;
- An estimated 630,000 acres burned, primarily pasturelands;
- Estimated livestock loss: between 3,000 and 9,000 head of cattle;
- Large volumes of hay and feed destroyed; and
- Estimated cost of fencing destroyed exceeds $36 million.