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Archive for Saturday, March 8, 2003

Governor, ag secretary urge quick drought relief

March 8, 2003

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— Kansas farmers should not have to wait until summer to apply for $200 million in federal drought relief, Gov. Kathleen Sebelius said Friday.

Sebelius and Agriculture Secretary Adrian Polansky have written to President Bush, asking that Congress speed its distribution of $3.1 billion in drought disaster aid.

"Our farmers have been waiting since last summer to hear if they would receive much-needed drought disaster aid," Sebelius said. "We shouldn't ask them to wait another six months for aid that really could be delivered much more quickly."

Kansas State University Research and Extension has estimated that this year's revenues for Kansas' top crops -- wheat, grain sorghum, corn and soybeans -- will be $1.1 billion less than in 2002.

Insurance covers about 38 percent of the losses, but net farm income is expected to be about $10,000 after taxes, expenses and debt service.

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