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Arizona Ranchers, Livestock Producers Eligible For Drought Disaster Assistance

Ranchers and livestock producers in Navajo and Apache counties may be eligible for 2018 drought disaster assistance, with something called the Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP).

The LFP provides compensation to producers after drought or fire. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, a little more than 73 percent of Arizona is considered either in a severe or extreme drought. The Navajo County Board of Supervisors formally issued a state of emergency declaration Feb. 13.

On Friday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency said Arizona ranchers and producers in Navajo and Apache counties are now eligible, after meeting qualifying drought ratings. Tribal officials anticipate large-scale drought conditions to persist this summer, saying it will create a shortage of water and feed for livestock.

Eligible livestock include alpacas, beef cattle, buffalo, beefalo, dairy cattle, deer, elk, emus, equine, goats, llamas, reindeer or sheep that have been or would have been grazing the eligible grazing land or pastureland during the normal grazing period.

Qualifying fires are those occurring on rangeland managed by a federal agency and the producer is prohibited by the federal agency from grazing the normal permitted livestock on the managed rangeland due to the fire.

Heather van Blokland was a host at KJZZ from 2016 to 2021.