Gov. Walker wants disaster declaration for northern counties after July flooding

MADISON — Gov. Scott Walker is asking federal agriculture officials to declare a disaster in three northern Wisconsin counties in the wake of heavy rains and flooding.

Walker's office announced Monday that the governor asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture on Friday for a disaster declaration for Ashland, Bayfield and Iron counties. Farmers in those counties suffered crop losses after heavy rains and flooding swept through the area in July.

Walker's office says the rain left fields oversaturated or underwater for an extended period of time, killing crops or dramatically reducing yields.

A disaster declaration would make farmers in those counties as well as adjacent counties eligible for a variety of federal assistance programs.