In Nevada, the winter may have brought snow to the north and modest rain fall here in the south, but the drought continues to tighten its grip over the whole state.
The drought here has become so bad, the U.S. Agriculture Department has declared most of Nevada a natural disaster area. That includes Clark and Nye counties.
And state water officials say more trouble is brewing for ranchers and farmers in western Nevada where cutbacks have been ordered in irrigation supplies for crops. Droughts have happened before, of course, but this one is officially entering year four.
The USDA has designated Carson City, Churchill, Clark, Douglas, Esmeralda, Humboldt, Lander, Lyon, Mineral, Nye, Pershing, and Washoe counties. Farmers and ranchers will be eligible for low-interest emergency loans.
According to the USDA, farmers and ranchers in Elko, Eureka, Lincoln, Storey and White Pine counties will also be eligible for low-interest loans.
Raul Morales, deputy state director for resources and grazing programs with the Bureau of Land Management.
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