Oregon Senators ask for emergency grazing rights on federal land – Argus Observer | Ontario, OR: News

Oregon Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley have asked the Department of Agriculture to extend emergency grazing of cattle on Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management land.

Wyden and Merkley wrote a letter Thursday to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell asking for the relief that includes Malheur, Harney, Lake and Klamath counties.

CT Derm December 2011

“Given the severity of the drought and the disastrous conditions faced by these Oregon farmers and ranchers, we ask that you expeditiously consider extending emergency grazing opportunities on Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management land, including land that might otherwise be incorporated in the Conservation Reserve Program,” the senators wrote in the letter. “The situation facing these counties is dire, and requires bringing all available solutions to the table.”

Klamath, Lake, Harney, and Malheur counties, which are still recovering from last year’s record drought-fueled fire season, have already been declared drought disaster counties by the USDA.

Four massive fires in the region in 2012 have had a severe impact on already burdened feed, forage and water resources in southeastern and south central part of the state, prompting the request from the senators.

via Oregon Senators ask for emergency grazing rights on federal land – Argus Observer | Ontario, OR: News.

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