Due to the severe drought conditions currently hitting Wright County, the Board of County Commissioners has officially put into place a burn ban for the next 60 days.
On Thursday, July 21, the Commission signed the resolution that will remain in effect until they rescind the order or possibly extend it past late September.
In their official resolution, the Commission determined that the “present fire danger” within Wright County is extremely high due to the drought.
In order to “protect the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Wright County,” the Commission took the emergency action during its meeting.
The Mountain Grove Fire Department gave a reminder to smokers during the ban,…”If you smoke, we ask that you don’t toss your cigarette out of your car window. It can easily start a fire.”
The fire department discourages no outside open burning until the burn ban is lifter after getting some substantial rain.
The decision taken by the Commission came also on the same day that Gov. Mike Parson issued an executive order, declaring a drought alert for 53 counties in southern and central Missouri. Wright County is one of the 53 noted.
The focus of the order is on cities south of the Missouri River.
“Drought conditions in many parts of Missouri compound the challenges producers are already facing with high fuel prices and input costs,” Missouri Department of Agriculture Director Chris Chinn said in a Gov. Parson press release.
“Livestock producers are having to make difficult decisions about selling livestock because there is no pasture in many areas. Grain farmers are watching their crops wither before pollination. Conditions are difficult for many Missouri farmers and ranchers.”
Being a farmer himself, Gov. Parson also commented on how the drought is noticeable on his own property.
“I know on my farm that conditions have deteriorated quickly, and we are hearing the same reports from countless other farm and ranch families across the state,” Gov. Parson said.
“By responding now, early in this drought, we can greatly reduce the impact on our agricultural community and Missouri citizens. Our farmers are a critical resource for our state, and it is important that we assist them as much as possible through this difficult time.”
According to a press release, “Gov. Parson has directed the departments of Natural Resources and Conservation to create a process for allowing farmers water access at state parks and conservation areas.
The Department of Natural Resources will also assess state park areas that can be made available for haying.
The Missouri Department of Transportation will offer special over-width hauling permits, which waive certain fees and restrictions to farmers and ranchers moving hay.”
Resources can be found at www.dnr.mo.gov/drought.
Help in preventing wildfires can be found at www.mdc.mo.gov/your-property/fire-management/wildfire-prevention.
“In addition to the impacts on Missouri farmers and agriculture, drought conditions are causing an increase in wildfires and wildfire risk, particularly across southern Missouri the last few weeks,” Missouri Department of Conservation Director Sara Parker Pauley said in a press release.
“The Department works closely with 775 rural fire departments to fight wildfires in Missouri. We ask Missourians to take extra precautions to prevent wildfires and report any wildfires you observe to your local fire department or sheriff department, especially during times of drought.”
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