SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) today reaffirmed his commitment to the state’s drought-stricken farmers and ranchers after the United States Department of Agriculture declared a dozen Utah counties as disaster areas.
“Growing crops and raising livestock in Utah’s harsh climate are challenging enough during the best of years, but drought and scorching heat have combined to make this year one of the worst in recent memory for Utah’s farmers and ranchers,” Hatch said. “Cattle numbers in Utah are down to 1960 levels and crop yields in parts of the state are predicted to be the lowest in decades.
“This disaster declaration today paves the way for those hardest hit by the drought
to receive emergency loans and other forms of federal assistance,” Hatch continued. “To help facilitate this process, I am closely monitoring the situation and will continue coordinating with the Utah Governor’s Office and federal government to help ensure our farmers and ranchers get the assistance they so desperately need as promptly as possible as they struggle to weather one of the worst droughts in 50 years.”
The Agriculture Department has designated Beaver, Iron and Piute counties as
primary disaster areas. Box Elder, Cache, Rich, Garfield, Kane, Millard, Sevier, Washington and Wayne counties, which have been designated as contiguous counties, also might qualify for relief, provided eligibility requirements are met.