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Blizzard-Lost Plains Cattle Will Hurt Area Economy



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The head of the South Dakota Stockgrowers Association says an early October blizzard that killed tens of thousands of cattle in western South Dakota will have a staggering economic impact.
    
Stockgrowers Executive Director Silvia Christen told the Rapid City Council on Monday night that the direct economic impact of the cattle loses could be half a billion dollars, and the indirect impact could be $1.7 billion.
    
So far there's been no federal aid. A relief fund set up in the wake of the Oct. 4 blizzard that dumped up to 4 feet of snow in the region has about $300,000 in donations so far. Christen says money has come from people in 48 states and three countries.
    
Ranchers in northwestern Nebraska and southwestern North Dakota also suffered heavy cattle losses.
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