Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media

A battle is brewing in the organic food industry.  The largest trade association for organic farmers, marketers, and processors wants growers to help pay for promotional campaigns.

Grant Wood

How do you define a farmer?

A. A person who does the physical labor to plant a crop.

B. A person who pays for everything it takes to run a farm.

C. A person who owns farmland.

D. All of the above.

It’s a tricky question. For over two decades, the government’s definition of who is an “actively engaged farmer” has been criticized for being too loose and subjective - a loophole allowing farm operations to add investors to their business so they can rake in extra money in farm program payments.

Jason Parrott / TSPR

Iowa Fertilizer Company hopes to complete its roughly $2-billion plant near Wever in the coming months.  The ongoing construction, though, has resulted in a lawsuit against the company.

Rich Egger

The Macomb City Council is sending a letter to the Governor and Legislature asking to receive full funding from the state.

Governor Bruce Rauner has proposed cutting in half local government’s share of the state’s income tax revenue.

Rich Egger

An updated strategic plan is close to completion for the district. Superintendent Patrick Twomey said the district has spent about a year-and-a-half working on its vision for "what education can look like here in Macomb."

Rick Carter's lawsuit against Lee County is finally over after the Iowa Supreme Court denied his latest request for review.  The denial came in the form of a one sentence statement from Chief Justice Mark Cady: "After consideration by this court, en banc, further review of the above-captioned case is denied."

Domenico Montanaro is NPR's lead editor for politics and digital audience. Based in Washington, D.C., he directs political coverage across the network's broadcast and digital platforms.

Before joining NPR in 2015, Montanaro served as political director and senior producer for politics and law at PBS NewsHour. There, he led domestic political and legal coverage, which included the 2014 midterm elections, the Supreme Court and the unrest in Ferguson, Mo.

Prior to PBS NewsHour, Montanaro was deputy political editor at NBC News, where he covered two presidential elections and reported and edited for the network's political blog, "First Read." He has also worked at CBS News, ABC News, The Asbury Park Press in New Jersey, and has taught high-school English.

Congressman Aaron Schock (R-IL) announced his last day in office will be March 31. Schock has been making headlines recently over concerns his office misspent taxpayer funds.

Rich Egger

One of the contested races for the Galesburg City Council next month will be in an area that includes the city’s downtown. Incumbent Peter Schwartzman will face a challenge from Ted Hoffman in Ward 5. 

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