Gov. Branstad holds public discussion on drought conditions

With temperatures rising over 100 degrees and no rain, this drought is proving to be one of the worst in Iowa history for crop and livestock producers.

Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds were in Mt. Pleasant Tuesday morning for a public discussion on drought conditions. Many concerned citizens came to express their opinions.

â??This is an ear that's a problem. It's probably going to lose more kernels because of the heat and stress it has been enduring and if some of those kernels mature, this ear is probably not harvestable,â?? said Wayne Humphreys, Iowa corn farmer.

There was a panel discussion by relevant state and federal agencies, input from agricultural stakeholders and Tim Hall from the Department of Natural Resources were all there to address the drought conditions.

â??There's been a lot of comparisons between this year and 1988 for good reason. Basically this will be the first year since '88 we've had really a national scale drought, unusually hot weather, as well as unusually dry conditions and we've had years where we had one or the other but not really both together,â?? said Harry Hillaker, state climatologist.

And the one thing on everyoneâ??s mind is what the government is going to do to help with the drought.

â??The one thing we do have a chance to see improve is the new farm bill. And so I think, and obviously in our state, we need to work with our congressional delegation, do all we can to encourage them to address some of the issues you talked about, especially those affecting say crop insurance and the livestock industry in this farm bill. So I think there's a good chance that that could all get done by the congress between now and Election Day,â?? Gov. Branstad said.