Drought response and 2013 preparation for Kansas
Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback convened a meeting Dec. 20 of Kansas leaders to discuss the persistent drought and the toll it is continuing to take on Kansas. Plans for 2013 were identified to assist communities, businesses, farmers and ranchers to help cope with the decreasing water supply and historic dry conditions.
The governor asked all Kansans to do their part and take conservation seriously.
"We can't predict the end date of this drought," Brownback said. "I am asking all Kansans to please take steps to reduce their water usage and be conscious of fire hazards. There have been examples of communities cooperating to respond to this drought, but we need ALL Kansas communities working together to conserve, provide assistance and resources to reduce the damage of this drought."
Kansas Adjutant General Maj. Gen. Lee Tafanelli; Kansas Secretary of Agriculture Dale Rodman; Kansas Secretary of Health and Environment, Division of Environment Director John Mitchell; Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism Secretary Robin Jennison and Kansas Water Office Director Tracy Streeter joined the governor and discussed action items they recommended for the upcoming year.
The main message shared by state leaders was cities and rural water districts need to measure their current water supply as well as review and use their conservation and drought emergency plans. They need to evaluate their experience from this past year and update those plans to make sure they are prepared to address water supply needs should the drought continue as predicted.
Brownback reminded citizens of the website, Drought.ks.gov, which provides drought information for all Kansans. It provides easy access to specific drought information, as well as links to state and federal resources for farmers and ranchers, small businesses, Kansans, and cities and counties.
The Governor's Drought Response Team will continue to watch the situation closely and work to minimize the effects the drought has on Kansans.