USDA

Multiple Reasons for Lost Colonies
12:30 am
Fri May 3, 2013

USDA Report on Honey Bee Health

A new report from the USDA identifies multiple reasons why honey bees are dying off in the United States.

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Different amount of Rainfall key factor.
3:01 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Drought Hit Western IL Crops Unevenly

Credit ag.purdue.edu

Recently released numbers by the USDA show that the drought affected crop yields last hear differently across Western Illinois.

Corn yields in McDonough and Mason counties were down thirty bushels per acre from last year.  Adams and Pike County were down 60 bushels while Mercer County was actually up twenty.

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Women and Hispanic farmers may receive payments
3:24 pm
Wed February 27, 2013

Deadline Looms for USDA Discrimination Claims

Credit https://www.facebook.com/AgriWomen/photos_stream

Women and Hispanic farmers who believe that were discriminated against by the USDA have one month left to file a claim with the federal government.

Women and Hispanic farmers who believe they were denied USDA farm service loans have until march 25th to file claims.

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Wants to stop people exchanging benefits for cash.
12:35 pm
Tue February 26, 2013

USDA Cracks Down on Food Stamp Fraud

Credit http://www.fns.usda.gov (via wikipedia)

The USDA says it’s changing  the rules of its aid program commonly known as “food stamps” to help crack down on fraud.

The agency is expanding its legal definition of “trafficking” to crack down on people exchanging food stamp benefits for cash.

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May let farmers sell emissions credits
3:28 pm
Wed February 13, 2013

USDA Works with Farmers to Cut Greenhouse Gases

Credit Credit: Lynne Betts, USDA/NRCS)

A program across Illinois and Iowa is looking at ways for farmers to help reduce the amount of greenhouse gases they produce, and to be compensated for it.

The program explores ways farmers can change the way they apply nitrogen fertilizer to reduce the amount of nitrous oxide gas that is created.

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Limits snacks to 200 calories each
2:46 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

USDA Proposes Rules Mandating Healthier Snacks in Schools

Credit keepingbeautiful.com

Months after the USDA enacted rules making school lunches healthier, the agency is proposing rules to mandate healthier snacks in schools as well.

The Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 set new guidelines for school lunches but also required the USDA to establish nutrition standards for all food served in schools, not just lunches.

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May Boost Local Food Movement.
2:13 pm
Thu January 24, 2013

USDA Creates New Microloan Program

Credit USDA

The USDA has launched a new microloan program that it says is designed to help small and family operations along with beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers.

According to a  local farm loan specialist  it may especially help a specific kind of small farmer, and give a boost to the local food movement.

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Grant and Loan to come from USDA
12:10 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Funding Will Advance Colchester Sewer Project

Colchester has the last and most important component to move forward with a large-scale sewer project-money.

The USDA's Rural Development program will give the city a grant of a $1.56 million and a loan of $2.35 million. The interest rate on the loan is 2.125%.

Mayor Danny Bice is glad for the money but he still thinks it will put stress on the city's finances.

He says, “We were actually hoping to get a little bit more (in the grant). We're going to have to run the numbers and make sure it's still feasible for the customers in town.”

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USDA Declaration
3:14 pm
Thu August 16, 2012

Drought-Related Disaster in Illinois

Rich Egger

All counties in Illinois have  been designated as “primary disaster areas” due to drought.

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack said the designations came at the request of Governor Pat Quinn and  because of a national drought monitor that shows lack of rain plaguing the entire state. All counties have been affected by drought  for  at least the past eight weeks.

The designations mean all Illinois farmers are eligible for emergency loans from the federal government.

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Mayor hopes for large turnout
6:55 am
Thu July 5, 2012

City to Hold Public Hearing on Sewer Rates

Residents of Colchester will get a chance to make their voices heard on sewer rate increases. The public hearing is Monday, July 9th, at 7 p.m. in city hall.

They face sewer rates of between $40 and $50 per month to pay for repairs to the city's sanitary sewer system. The hikes are needed to bring the city into compliance with federal EPA regulations.

Mayor Danny Bice hopes for a large turnout at the hearing.

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