IRON MOUNTAIN (WWJ/AP) – Farmers in four western Upper Peninsula counties are expected to be eligible for low-interest loans due to heat and drought-related crop damage and losses.

The office of U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow announced Thursday that Dickinson, Gogebic, Iron and Menominee counties will be considered natural disaster areas because of crop damage in nearby Wisconsin.

The Upper Peninsula counties are in addition to Branch, Cass, Hillsdale and St. Joseph counties in southwestern Michigan, which got the federal designation Wednesday. Several other Michigan counties in that area got the designation because they’re contiguous.

Conditions haven’t been much better in the lower part of the state. In June, Metro Detroit saw just over an inch of rainfall — more than Additionally, Meteorologists say June was the ninth warmest June in Detroit history.

The drought follows a blow to Michigan’s tree fruit industry this year. The federal government earlier declared most of Michigan a disaster area because of damage to fruit crops from spring weather, making growers eligible to seek low-interest loans.

RELATED: Detroit Heat On Dangerous Trend  

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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