Crop loss across Kentucky prompted by the third driest May through August in the past 113 years forced Gov. Ernie Fletcher to request U.S. Department of Agriculture disaster assistance for farmers across the Commonwealth.
Fletcher said his request was made due to crop losses resulting from drought conditions that began in February and continue today.
The governor received letters from the Kentucky Farm Bureau and two state legislators encouraging him to seek a disaster declaration from the USDA.
“Kentucky experienced higher than normal temperatures and limited rainfall this summer causing the state to move deeper into a drought status,” Fletcher’s letter stated. “The Commonwealth is now in severe to extreme drought status and is truly in a state of disaster.”
Southern Kentucky farmers have begun to harvest corn and early reports show yields are 40 percent lower than average, according to the governor’s request. Many other Kentucky farmers are being forced to liquidate cattle, due to the financial strain of providing supplemental feed as pasture loss increases, he added.
Fletcher instructed the Kentucky Office of Insurance to exempt licensed adjusters in other states from the licensing requirements in Kentucky for the purpose of adjusting crop insurance claims, allowing crop insurance companies to send licensed adjusters into Kentucky to expedite the claims process for Kentucky producers.
Source: Office of the Governor of Kentucky
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