Drought disaster funding denied by FEMA

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BISMARCK, N.D. - The drought this summer left many seeking relief from ranchers to lawmakers.

This week, FEMA denied the presidential declaration on the drought.

The North Dakota Agriculture Commissioner said the funding from this wouldn't have made a difference for local farmers and ranchers struggling as a result of the drought.

Wade Staigle has over 400 cattle at his ranch and when the drought came around, it was hard for him not to worry.

"We only received just about two inches of rain here from the first of march to the first of august so at that time it put us in a situation here where we didn't know exactly what we were going to have to do or where we would have to go with the cattle," said farm and ranch owner, Wade Staigle.

This summer North Dakota's Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring lobbied for funding through the presidential major disaster declaration FEMA denied it.

"Nobody knew exactly what was going to be coming down the pipeline from the federal government," said Staigle.

"It wasn't going to do any good for agriculture," said Goehring. "There were some people out there pushing for presidential disaster. Pushing the governor for presidential disaster; thinking that there would be some relief for farmers and ranchers. There really wasn't."

Goehring says many have already filed for assistance through other agencies and others like Wade say that in a circumstance like this preparation is key.

"Well we've always prepared for the worst," said Staigle.

He's hoping next year they won't have the same issue.