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Alabama must redraw its Congressional maps, CNN reports a former official told the feds Trump knew the process for declassifying documents, and Canadian wildfires affect the health of humans and wildlife.

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The Supreme Court upholds a key provision of the Voting Rights Act over Alabama redistricting, smoky skies could spell EPA trouble for some states, and President Biden calls on Congress to pass LGBTQ+ protections.

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Rural communities launch projects with funds from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, a study says rural transgender adults feel less supported than those in urban areas, and a summer road trip could mean majestic scenic byways or a sprinkling of donut shops.

Planting the Seeds for Young Farmers

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Friday, October 28, 2011   

A bill introduced in Congress could help the next generation of farmers and ranchers.

The Center for Rural Affairs is backing the measure, which is co-sponsored by Reps. Tim Walz, D-Minn., and Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb. Traci Bruckner, the center’s assistant director of rural policy, says the legislation places a high priority on helping young people get into agriculture.

"This bill, I think, overall costs roughly around $400 million. It's not really creating new programs. It’s a way of finding how to make the existing programs work so they better serve beginning farmers, by giving them priorities, and making beginning farmers priorities, giving them extra points, giving them higher cost share rates, and those type of things."

As the average age of farmers continues to creep up, Bruckner says, it's critical to get more young people interested in working the land. She says the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Opportunity Act has several key elements.

"Also as part of this, it would reauthorize the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program, which provides training and mentoring and land-leasing services to help get that next generation started."

Introduction of this package in the House and Senate, Bruckner says, is a crucial step in focusing more of the public investment in the 2012 farm bill on the next generation of farmers and ranchers.


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