ST. PAUL (LEARFIELD) — The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is sending out nearly 19 million dollars in drought relief checks this week to livestock farmers and special crop producers.

More than 29-hundred of the three thousand received applications were approved for the 2021 program. M-D-A officials say because the legislation required that all qualifying applicants receive a payment, the checks will be pro-rated to 41-point-nine percent of the amount farmers were eligible to receive.

The maximum payment will be three-thousand-143 dollars this year.

State Ag Commissioner Thom Petersen says this amount “should help people pay a few bills and that’s important this time of year.”