Governor Declares Drought Emergencies

Governor Laura Kelly issued Drought Declarations for Kansas counties that includes 74 out of 105 counties either in an emergency, warning or watch status.

The drought declaration placed 13 counties in emergency status, 18 into a warning status and 44 into a watch status.

This action was recommended by Earl Lewis, Director of the Kansas Water Office, and Chair of the Governor’s Drought Response Team.

Most of the state has received less than 70% of its normal rainfall since January, and many southwestern counties have received less than half of their normal precipitation.

Counties who are in an emergency stage are eligible for emergency use of water from certain state fishing lakes due to the Kansas Water Office Memorandum of Understanding with the Kansas Department of Wildlife Parks and Tourism.

Individuals and communities need to contact the Kansas Water Office for a water supply request prior to any withdrawals from lakes.

They will in turn be referred to the appropriate Kansas Department of Wildlife Parks and Tourism office to obtain the necessary permit to withdraw the water.