Gov. Jay Nixon visited the Joplin Regional Stockyards to update livestock producers and farmers on the emergency cost-share program the Governor's administration launched last week.
In response to the historic heat and drought across Missouri, Gov. Nixon made available $7 million to help livestock producers and farmers drill or deepen wells or expand irrigation systems. As of Monday morning, the program has approved 490 contracts for projects, totaling more than $2.1 million in assistance to producers and farmers. Gov. Nixon reminded producers and farmers that the deadline to apply for the program is Monday, Aug. 6.
"Livestock producers across Missouri have been hit hard by this historic period of heat and drought, and this emergency assistance is making a real difference for our farm families," Gov. Nixon said. "We will continue to work closely with local soil and water district boards to approve these applications and keep this vital assistance moving. I encourage producers and farmers who need access to water to submit their applications by Monday, Aug. 6."
Examples of approved projects include:
Mike, Judy and Gale Turner own 150 head of cattle in Newton County. In past years, they have watered their cattle with three ponds and a spring on their farm. Because of the prolonged drought this year, their spring has gone dry; two ponds are dry; and the remaining pond has only inches of water remaining. The emergency program will help the Turner family install a new well, distribution line and tank for a total cost of $9,687.
Terry Collins has 90 head of cattle in Texas County. In past years, he has watered his cattle on springs and ponds on his property, as well as on Beaver Creek, which flows through his farm. His springs have stopped flowing; his ponds are nearly exhausted; and Beaver Creek has gone dry. Collins was concerned he would be forced to sell some of his cattle within the next week. The emergency program is providing a new well and distribution for a total cost of $11,079, and the well driller was on site Friday.
Scott Wagner has 85 head of cattle and 92,000 broilers on his farm in Newton County. His farm had operated two wells, one for the cattle operation and the other for the broilers. His cattle well has gone dry, and the broiler well cannot support both operations. The emergency program is helping construct a new well and distribution system for a total cost of $7,585.