BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The state-owned Bank of North Dakota may be making low-interest disaster loans available to ranchers dealing with drought.
Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring estimates that North Dakota cattle ranchers have sold off about 100,000 animals in recent months due to drought.
The loan program is aimed at helping ranchers rebuild breeding stock and to pay for feed to sustain herd levels.
Goehring, Gov. Doug Burgum and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem make up the Industrial Commission, which oversees the bank. The commission will meet Wednesday to approve guidelines for the loan program.
The latest U.S. Drought Monitor map shows 66 percent of North Dakota in some stage of drought. Twenty-one percent of the state is in extreme or exceptional drought.