from March 22

MEETING IN ASHLAND WILL OUTLINE DISASTER PROGRAMS

     Ranchers affected by wildfire in Kansas this spring could be eligible for payments through various USDA disaster programs. The Livestock Indemnity Program will provide benefits to producers for livestock death losses in excess of normal mortality. The Emergency Assistance for Livestock Program will provide limited benefits to producers for lost livestock, feed and grazing resources. Cost-share funds will be available to restore fences through the Emergency Conservation Program (ECP). Landowners should contact their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) office before rebuilding fence. ECP has been requested by and is expected to be approved in at least 14 Kansas counties. To be eligible for any of these programs, ranchers should immediately notify their local FSA office.
     In addition to these programs, USDA announced yesterday it would dedicate $6 million in Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funding to help farmers and ranchers affected by wildfires in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas. The funds will be available to help ranchers restore grazing lands, rebuild fencing, protect damaged watersheds and implement various conservation measures. Producers in affected areas should contact their local Natural Resources Conservation Service office for more information on this special EQIP funding. For more information on any of these disaster programs, click on the link at www.kla.org or call the KLA office in Topeka.
     KLA is co-hosting an informational meeting in Ashland today (3/22). Area ranchers are invited to attend the meeting at 2:00 p.m. in the Ashland High School gym. Details will be provided on USDA programs as well as other assistance available to ranchers impacted by the wildfires.

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from March 21

PROCEEDS FROM UPCOMING AUCTIONS WILL BENEFIT KLF WILDFIRE RELIEF

     Proceeds from specified lots at several auction market and production sales will help the Kansas Livestock Foundation (KLF) assist ranchers affected by recent wildfires across the state. Farmers and Ranchers Livestock Sales will be selling a Charolais bull donated by Fink Beef Genetics near Randolph in a rollover auction today (3/21). A steer donated by Neal and Marya Haverkamp of Bern will sell in a progressive auction March 23 at Marysville Livestock Auction. Pratt Livestock also will be holding a benefit auction March 23. The Manhattan Commission Company will be selling a registered SimAngus open heifer donated by River Creek Farms of Manhattan and a black/white face heifer provided by Garrett and Gary Preedy from Waverly in a progressive auction March 24. A black Angus steer donated by Bourquin Farms of Paola will be sold in a rollover auction at Paola Livestock Auction March 24. Cherokee Livestock Sales in Oklahoma will be selling two heifers March 29, with the proceeds from one going to KLF and the other to help ranchers in their state.
     Hinkson Angus Ranch of Cottonwood Falls will donate the proceeds from a 3-year-old commercial cow-calf pair to sell during their annual production sale today (3/21). The pair will sell as Lot 130. To view the sale catalog, visit www.hinksonangus.com.
     A registered Angus bull donated by Larson Angus Ranch of Sharon Springs will sell tomorrow (3/22) during their annual production sale. The bull will sale as Lot 39 and can be viewed on video at https://www.dvauction.com/video_catalogs/2709.
     McCabe Genetics of Elk City will be donating 25% of the proceeds from two bulls selling in their annual bull and commercial female sale March 23. The bulls well sell as Lot 1 and Lot 192. Both bulls can be viewed on videos at www.mccabegenetics.com.
     Proceeds from the sale of an open Angus heifer will be donated by Black Velvet Cattle. The heifer will sell as Lot 84 during the ranch’s annual production sale March 28 at Mankato Livestock Commission. A sale catalog can be found at www.blackvelvetcattle.com.
     A registered Hereford bull donated by Sandhill Farms of Haviland will sell March 31 during their annual bull and female sale. The bull will sale as Lot 62. The sale catalog can be viewed at www.sandhillfarms.com.
     For those who cannot attend these production sales, but would like to place a bid, call KLA’s Stephen Russell at (785) 458-2650. There will be an opportunity to add on donation dollars after each sale.
     Cash contributions, either through auctions benefiting KLF or direct donations to the foundation, are tax-deductible. To donate, go to www.kla.org/donationform.aspx or send checks to KLF, 6031 SW 37th Street, Topeka, KS 66614. Every dollar collected will go to ranchers in affected areas.

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from March 20

FENCE EXEMPTION BILL APPROVED BY KANSAS LEGISLATURE

     The Kansas House of Representatives and Senate both passed a KLA supported bill last week that would exempt the sale of fencing materials used to repair or replace agricultural fences damaged or destroyed by wildfires in 2016 and 2017. A similar bill passed the 2016 Kansas Legislature, but expired December 31, 2016.
     HB 2387 would exempt purchases for 2017 and 2018. Gov. Sam Brownback is expected to sign the bill this week and the measure will become effective later this spring.
     Individuals who have purchased fencing materials for this purpose and paid sales taxes will be able to claim a refund from the Kansas Department of Revenue. KLA will provide more details to members once HB 2387 becomes law. In the meantime, purchasers of fencing materials used to repair or replace fences destroyed by wildfires are encouraged to retain sales receipts.
     The KLA legislative affairs staff lobbied on several other issues last week as well.
     Truck weights - KLA provided testimony last week to the Senate Transportation Committee in support of HB 2095, which would increase the legal gross vehicle weight from 85,500 lbs. to 90,000 lbs. for trucks equipped with a six-axle semi-trailer combination. KLA and numerous other agriculture groups are supporting the measure as a means to decrease transportation costs and provide more uniformity with the maximum weight laws in other agricultural states in the region. The committee is scheduled to vote on HB 2095 this week.
     Property taxes - The House and Senate tax committees held hearings on bills to repeal the property tax lid that went into effect January 1, 2017. This law currently requires voter approval if counties or cities adopt a budget that relies on property taxes in an amount that exceeds the property taxes levied the previous year by more than the consumer price index. KLA provided testimony opposed to SB 167 and HB 2376 and noted the valuations of agricultural land and mill levies have increased significantly in many counties during the last six years. The KLA Board of Directors voted during the annual Legislative Meeting last month in Topeka to oppose any attempt to repeal the property tax lid.

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from March 17

UPCOMING AUCTIONS TO BENEFIT KLF WILDFIRE RELIEF

     Proceeds from specified lots at several auction market and production sales will help the Kansas Livestock Foundation (KLF) assist ranchers affected by recent wildfires across the state. Farmers and Ranchers Livestock Sales will be selling a Charolais bull donated by Fink Beef Genetics near Randolph in a rollover auction March 21. Cherokee Livestock Sales in Oklahoma will be selling two heifers March 22, with the proceeds from one going to KLF and the other to help ranchers in their state. A steer donated by Neal and Marya Haverkamp of Bern will sell in a progressive auction March 23 at Marysville Livestock Auction. Pratt Livestock also will be holding a benefit auction March 23.
     Springhill Herefords and Alcove Cattle Company, both of Blue Rapids, will contribute 5% of all bull sales from their On Target Bull sale March 18. Customers can match the 5% or donate more, if they so choose. The sale catalog can be viewed at www.springhillherefords.com. Kratzer Show Goats will donate the proceeds from a purebred boar doe to sell in their production sale March 18 in Ulysses. More information on the doe can be found on the Kratzer Show Goats Facebook page.
     Hinkson Angus Ranch of Cottonwood Falls will donate the proceeds from a 3-year-old commercial cow-calf pair to sell during their annual production sale March 21. The pair will sell as Lot 130. To view the sale catalog, visit www.hinksonangus.com.
     McCabe Genetics of Elk City will be donating 25% of the proceeds of two bulls selling in their annual bull and commercial female sale March 23. The bulls well sell as Lot 1 and Lot 192. Both bulls can be viewed on videos at www.mccabegenetics.com.
     Proceeds from the sale of an open Angus heifer will be donated by Black Velvet Cattle. The heifer will sell as Lot 84 during the ranch’s annual production sale March 28 at Mankato Livestock Commission. A sale catalog can be found at www.blackvelvetcattle.com.
     A registered Hereford bull donated by Sandhill Farms of Haviland will sell March 31 during their annual bull and female sale. The bull will sale as Lot 62. The sale catalog can be viewed at www.sandhillfarms.com.
     For those who cannot attend these cattle production sales, but would like to place a bid, call KLA’s Stephen Russell at (785) 458-2650. There will be an opportunity to add on donation dollars after each sale.
     Cash contributions, either through auctions benefitting KLF or direct donations to the foundation, are tax-deductible. To donate, go to www.kla.org/donationform.aspx or send checks to KLF, 6031 SW 37th Street, Topeka, KS 66614. Every dollar collected will go to ranchers in affected areas.

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from March 16

BEEF MESSAGES EXTENDED DURING NATIONAL NUTRITION MONTH

     The Kansas Beef Council (KBC), in conjunction with National Nutrition Month, is encouraging Kansans to “Put Your Best Fork Forward” by making small, healthy shifts in food choices when cooking at home or eating on the go. These shifts include consuming more high-quality protein, like lean beef.  
     During March, KBC is using social media to promote new recipes released through a recent collaboration with the American Heart Association (AHA). These recipes show how to incorporate beef into heart-healthy meals. The nine AHA-certified recipes, including favorites like Sweet and Sloppy Joes, can be found on the KBC website, www.kansasbeef.org.  
     Later this month, KBC will be working with Wichita dietitian Gretchen Strathe from Little Red Nutrition to feature one of the AHA-certified recipes on KAKE-TV in Wichita. Viewers will learn how to make the beef dish, as well as hear how lean beef fits into a heart-healthy diet.  
     New studies continue to show lean beef and heart-healthy diets go hand-in-hand. KBC is extending the message about this new research by mailing literature about beef and cholesterol to 1,500 primary care physicians and physician assistants working in high-population areas of the state.

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from March 15

BILL WOULD MAKE FENCE DESTROYED BY WILDFIRE EXEMPT FROM SALES TAX

     The Kansas House of Representatives passed a bill yesterday (3/14) that would exempt the sale of fencing materials used to repair or replace agricultural fences damaged or destroyed by wildfires in 2016 and 2017. A similar bill passed the 2016 Kansas Legislature, but expired December 31, 2016.
     HB 2387 would exempt purchases for 2017 and 2018. The Senate is expected to act quickly on the measure so it would become effective later this spring.
     Individuals who have purchased fencing materials for this purpose and paid sales taxes will be able to claim a refund from the Kansas Department of Revenue. KLA will provide more details to members once HB 2387 becomes law. In the meantime, purchasers of fencing materials used to repair or replace fences destroyed by wildfires are encouraged to retain sales receipts.

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from March 14

AUCTIONS PROVIDE OPPORTUNITY TO DONATE TO WILDFIRE RELIEF

     Proceeds from specified lots at several auction market and production sales will help the Kansas Livestock Foundation (KLF) assist ranchers affected by recent wildfires across the state. Holton Livestock will be selling a steer today (3/14) donated by Kim and Kelly Kirkham of Valley Falls in a rollover auction. A steer donated by Steve Arndt of Emporia will be sold tomorrow (3/15) in a progressive auction at Emporia Livestock Sales. Pratt Livestock also will be holding a benefit auction March 23.
     A registered Angus heifer donated by Woodbury Farms near Quenemo will sell tomorrow (3/15) during their annual bull and female sale at Overbrook Livestock Commission Company. The heifer will sell as lot 55. To view the sale catalog, go to www.woodburyfarmskansas.com.
     Flat Iron Angus of Haddam will be donating the proceeds from the sale of an open registered heifer at their annual production sale tomorrow (3/15). Their sale catalog is posted on www.flatironangus.com/.
     Springhill Herefords and Alcove Cattle Company, both of Blue Rapids, will contribute 5% of all bull sales from their On Target Bull sale March 18. Customers can match the 5% or donate more, if they so choose. The sale catalog can be viewed at www.springhillherefords.com/.
     Hinkson Angus Ranch of Cottonwood Falls will donate the proceeds from a 3-year-old commercial cow-calf pair to sell during their annual production sale March 21. The pair will sell as Lot 130. To view the sale catalog, visit www.hinksonangus.com.
     McCabe Genetics of Elk City will be donating 25% of the proceeds of two bulls selling in their annual bull and commercial female sale March 23. The bulls well sell as Lot 1 and Lot 192. Both bulls can be viewed on videos at www.mccabegenetics.com/.
     For those who cannot attend these production sales, but would like to place a bid, call KLA’s Stephen Russell at (785) 458-2650. There will be an opportunity to add on donation dollars after each sale.
     In addition, Wedel Red Angus will be accepting fencing supplies and cash donations for KLF wildfire relief efforts at their annual sale today (3/14) in Leoti.
     Cash contributions, either through auctions benefitting KLF or direct donations to the foundation, are tax-deductible. To donate, click here or send checks to KLF, 6031 SW 37th Street, Topeka, KS 66614. Every dollar collected will go to ranchers in affected areas.

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from March 13

DISASTER PROGRAMS EXPECTED TO BE AVAILABLE FOR WILDFIRE RELIEF

     KLA members affected by recent wildfires may be eligible for payments through various USDA disaster programs. Ranchers should immediately notify their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) office of livestock, fence and feed losses. Notification can come in the form of a phone call, email or in person. At this point, the Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) is the only standing program available. LIP provides benefits to producers for livestock death losses in excess of normal mortality caused by adverse weather.
     Two other programs are expected to be implemented, but will require USDA authorization. The Emergency Assistance for Livestock Program would provide payments to producers for livestock, feed and grazing resources lost due to wildfires. Cost-share up to 75% will be available to restore livestock fences if the Emergency Conservation Program (ECP) is renewed. To get the most benefit from ECP, landowners should contact FSA before rebuilding fence.
     The key to qualifying for any of these programs is documenting losses. USDA recommends photographs, video or veterinary records to verify losses. Purchase, production and financial records could serve as additional documentation.
     For more information on available programs, click here or call the KLA office in Topeka.

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from March 10

GOVERNOR SIGNS ORDER ALLOWING LARGER LOADS FOR WILDFIRE RELIEF

     Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signed an executive order yesterday (3/9) to facilitate the immediate delivery of large quantities of hay, feed, fencing materials and other relief supplies to areas affected by wildfire. The executive order waives certain motor carrier regulations on trucks hauling livestock feed and fencing.
     The declaration applies to motor carriers directly participating in relief efforts. It eliminates some weight restrictions on trucks and allows loads of hay up to 12’ wide and 14’ 6” tall.
     “Even as we continue the fight to contain and defeat these fires, this executive order assists and expedites the arrival of recovery supplies as our communities begin to rebuild in the wake of these wildfires,” said Brownback.

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from March 9

AUCTIONS PROVIDE OPPORTUNITY TO DONATE TO WILDFIRE RELIEF EFFORT

     Proceeds from two auctions will help the Kansas Livestock Foundation (KLF) assist ranchers affected by recent wildfires across the state. A registered Angus heifer donated by Woodbury Farms will sell March 15 during their annual bull and female sale at Overbrook Livestock Commission Company. The heifer will sell as lot 55. For those who cannot attend the sale, but would like to place a bid, call Stephen Russell at (785) 458-2650. To view the sale catalog, go to www.woodburyfarmskansas.com. There will be an opportunity to add on additional dollars after the sale.
     One 2017 breeding to AQHA stallion Bluestem Vaquero is being donated by Wright Quarter Horses of El Dorado. The auction started March 8 and will run through March 12. To bid or for more information, go to the Wright Quarter Horse Facebook page at https://tinyurl.com/zxe63zk.
     These and other contributions to KLF are tax deductible. To donate, go to www.kla.org/donationform.aspx or send checks to KLF, 6031 SW 37th Street, Topeka, KS 66614. Every dollar collected will be used to provide relief for ranchers in the affected area.

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