Drought Declaration




WHEREAS,  Meade County is suffering from severe drought conditions due to significantly low moisture, late frost conditions, extreme heat, strong winds, and wildland fire conditions that have increased to an extreme condition; and

WHEREAS, The Board of Meade County Commissioners resolve that said conditions constitute a disaster of such severity and magnitude that effective response is beyond the capabilities of the County, or even the State of South Dakota, and that Federal assistance is necessary, and there are few emergency plans available to alleviate the damage and economic chaos resulting from these drought conditions; and

WHEREAS, Meade County does not have the financial resources to respond to this disaster; and

WHEREAS, Stock dams, creeks and other water sources are drying up and are unable to provide the necessary water for livestock, wildlife and fire fighting resources, and 

WHEREAS, 1,714,719 acres of pasture and croplands are affected; and

  • That the United States Drought Monitor currently shows all of Meade County in Moderate to Severe drought conditions with no signs of immediate improvement.
  • That the USDA Farm Service Agency has identified a critical economic loss of alfalfa /grass hay and pasture lands at $34,628,299

WHEREAS, Contiguous counties have enacted or are considering enacting a Drought Disaster Resolution; and

WHEREAS, Numerous other acres of South Dakota and surrounding states are also experiencing drought conditions which has threatened the availability of alternate sources of hay and forage, and the price of hay and forage; and

WHEREAS, the livestock and wildlife industry is important to Meade County, the State of South Dakota, and the nation’s economy and should be preserved; and

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that Meade County requests the SD Drought Task Force to consider these issues and declare a drought emergency that could make funding and resources available for livestock and farming programs as well as provide emergency resources for wildland fire protection; and 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Board of Meade County Commissioners declares an emergency and a disaster and requests that the Governor of the State of South Dakota also declare an emergency and disaster for Meade County; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Board of Meade County Commissioners respectfully petition the Governor of the State of South Dakota and the President of the United States to provide with all dispatch any remedies and state and/or federal assistance available for this type of emergency.

Dated this 28th Day of June, 2017 at Sturgis, South Dakota.

Galen Niederwerder, Chairman 

 Meade County Commission 


Lisa Schieffer, Auditor