WASHINGTON (B)--USDA will soon begin to divvy up $429 million to distribute to "nearly 186,000" U.S. livestock producers in 34 states, according to an announcement released June 7.

Congress mandated last year the money be sent in order to help counter "grazing losses due to natural disasters under the Livestock Assistance," a USDA spokeswoman said.

Livestock producers had from January 18 until May 4 this year to sign up for the payments.

"LAP payments reimburse farmers and ranchers who suffered at least a 40% grazing loss for three or more consecutive months," the spokeswoman said.

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