Senators gain drought assistance for some Montana counties

Beartooth NBC

by Drew Steele

Montana Senators Max Baucus and Jon Tester announced today Montana farmers and ranchers in seven additional counties will now have access to emergency assistance.

The Emergency Conservation Program focuses on rehabilitating ranchland torched by wildfires and suffering from drought conditions.

Tester says, “These additional resources will help them get back on their feet and strengthen our economy by strengthening their livelihood.”

The seven additional counties qualifying for the ECP Wildfire Program include: Rosebud, Powder River, Treasure, Cascade, Custer, Jefferson and Big Horn. Both Senators also secured emergency water for irrigation and livestock in 5 Montana counties hit hardest by the drought.

Baucus says, “One in five Montana jobs relies on our agriculture industry so it’s absolutely critical to keep pressing for the tools necessary to get through this wildfire season and the ongoing drought.”

Other counties qualifying for the Emergency Conservation Program include:

-Big Horn
-Sweet Grass

Baucus and Tester are continuing to urge the USDA to approve natural disaster designations which would allow producers to qualify for the following counties/reservations:

-Powder River
-Sweet Grass
-Judith Basis
-Golden Valley
-Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation