Donations to SD rancher relief fund pass $3 million mark

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The fund established to assist cattle producers in western South Dakota, who lost tens of thousands of livestock, continues to grow.

The South Dakota Stockgrowers Association, Cattlemen's Association and Sheepgrowers Association joined forces to setup the account to help livestock producers affected by the early October blizzard. Early estimates showed more than 60,000 cattle lost, but have since been dialed back to at least 21,000 head of cattle.

The original goal was to collect $1 million for producers’ short-term needs, but donations from across the world have more than tripled the starting goal. The Associated Press reports donations have been collected from more than 5,000 groups and individuals.

Applications for assistance have been processed for almost 400 livestock producers. Remaining funds will be distributed after the Dec. 31 application deadline.

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