BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota officials have announced an emergency hay transportation assistance program for drought-stricken livestock producers.

Gov. Doug Burgum and Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring announced the program Tuesday. The $1.5 million grant program will help reimburse a portion of hay transportation expenses to eligible producers hit hard by drought.

Burgum says extreme drought has exacerbated costs for North Dakota ranchers who now must go hundreds of miles for hay.

Eligible producers must come from a county registering D2, D3 or D4 on the drought monitor. The hay must be used for the producer's own operation, and costs must be incurred between June 1 and Oct. 20, 2017.

The program starts Sept. 5. The application deadline is Nov. 3.

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Online:

Applications can be made starting Sept. 5 at: www.nd.gov/ndda