BISMARCK, N.D. — The State Water Commission is adding $500,000 to North Dakota’s Drought Disaster Livestock Water Supply cost-share program.

To date, nearly $1.4 million has been allocated to the program. The commission says the $825,000 that was previously approved has already been committed to 268 projects for 195 applicants.

The money can be used for a variety of projects, including new water wells. The U.S. Drought Monitor says some ranchers are being forced to drill new water wells, with their existing wells drying up.

The latest Drought Monitor map shows 63 percent of the state in some form of drought, with 22 percent in extreme or exceptional drought, the two worst categories.

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