Drought declaration OK'd for 3 counties

June 25, 2013 03:10 pm

SALEM — Gov. John Kitzhaber has declared drought emergencies in three more Oregon counties, Baker, Gilliam and Malheur.

He said the declaration provides additional water management tools to assist irrigators, municipalities and other water users.

Kitzhaber said in a statement the three counties face "serious challenges with water availability," and climate patterns aren't expected to change.

Gilliam County is in north-central Oregon, Baker and Malheur in Eastern Oregon.

Earlier, Kitzhaber issued a similar declaration covering Klamath County, where drought has again resulted in curtailed irrigation.