Klamath County declares fourth straight drought, and this time it's extreme


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KLAMATH FALLS, Oregon — Klamath County has declared a drought for the fourth straight year.

The Herald and News newspaper (http://bit.ly/1GYSSYj ) reports county commissioners on Tuesday declared this year's drought qualifies as extreme, compared to just severe last year.

That means another tough water year for farmers, fish and wildlife in the Klamath Basin.

Commissioner Jim Bellet says rainfall has been normal this year, but the mountain snowpack — which feeds streams and reservoirs tapped for irrigation as it melts - is extremely low.

Gov. Kate Brown has authorized state drought declarations for Lake and Malheur counties, which allows for more flexibility in water management. Klamath County hopes she will do the same for them.

A federal drought declaration is needed to qualify for federal aid.

Information from: Herald and News, http://www.heraldandnews.com

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