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SARL Members and Alumni News

Gov. Reynold signs executive order aiming to help rural Iowa communities

Siouxland Proud | Posted on July 19, 2018

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds is hoping to help rural areas of the state through an executive order.  Reynolds signed the order Wednesday that creates the Governor’s Empower Rural Iowa Initiative, according to a release. They say the initiative will identify legislative, regulatory and policy changes through a partnership with the Iowa Rural Development Council. with co-chairs Lt. Gov. Adam Gregg and Sandy Ehrig of the Iowa Rural Development Council.


Maine legislator badly burned by fire on farm

Central Maine | Posted on July 19, 2018

Representative Craig Hickman reportedly was burned on his legs and chest during the Tuesday morning incident. A state representative from Winthrop was burned badly Tuesday morning while attempting to light a brush pile on fire but was expected to make a full recovery.


Ohio Governor Kasich signs order to toughen control of fertilizer pollution

Toledo Blade | Posted on July 19, 2018

 Frustrated by lawmakers’ refusal to consider a bill to get tougher on sources of agricultural pollution feeding Lake Erie’s chronic toxic algae problem, Gov. John Kasich on Wednesday took matters into his own hands with an executive order. “This is just requiring farmers to figure out a way to manage their land in a more effective and environmentally friendly way,” the Republican governor said. “I believe that farmers want to do that.”Under the order, his administration will ask the Ohio Soil and Water Conservation Commission at its July 19 meeting to designate eight watersheds or portions of watersheds with high phosphorous levels within the Maumee River Basin as “distressed.” That would trigger the writing of rules affecting all agricultural nutrient sources, including such things as storage, handling, and application of manure; erosion and sediment control from the land; and other agricultural practices. Civil penalties could apply for violations.


Baltimore becomes first major city to remove sugary drinks from kids' menus

NBC News | Posted on July 19, 2018

Baltimore has become the first major city to prohibit restaurants from including sugary drinks on children's menus. The measure, which went into effect on Wednesday, is intended to promote healthy habits in young children and their families by making the default kids' menu options water, milk and 100 percent fruit juices.Parents will still be able to order sugary drinks, such as sodas, for their children.


BMW increasing production in China, raising prices on SC-made SUVs in response to tariffs

The Post and Courier | Posted on July 18, 2018

Automaker BMW says it will build more of its popular SUVs overseas to offset the higher cost of sending cars to China due to recently enacted tariffs. BMW also said it will raise the price of South Carolina-built vehicles sold in China to help offset that country's new 40 percent import tax on cars from the U.S., retaliation for higher tariffs on Chinese goods imposed by President Donald Trump.The dpa news agency reported that Munich-based BMW said Monday it is "not in a position to completely absorb the tariff increases."


Lawmakers aim to use spending bill to block offshore drilling

The Hill | Posted on July 17, 2018

House lawmakers in both parties are hoping to use a spending bill to block offshore oil and natural gas drilling in the waterways off their states’ coasts. A handful of lawmakers, mainly from coastal states, are sponsoring proposed amendments to the annual appropriations bill for the Interior Department and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that would block Interior funding to allow drilling in particular areas.


NH Biomass plants may have to shut down after governor's veto

WMUR | Posted on July 17, 2018

Six New Hampshire biomass plants might be in jeopardy of closing after a bill was recently vetoed by Gov. Chris Sununu. The governor said the bill could have cost Granite Staters millions, but plant managers and employees said the plants are in jeopardy if lawmakers don't act. The governor issued the veto in June, saying the veto would not take anything away from the biomass industry. He said the bill would have given the industry an additional $30 million in subsidies, and vetoing it saved ratepayers about $25 million. Plant managers said the veto has already had an impact. At Pinetree, the pile of wood chips that fuels the plant is running low and will likely last for about a week."Once we go through that fuel, we will go into economic shutdown," manager Robert Lussier said.Officials at six biomass plants that employ about 900 people said they could close if nothing changes.


Canadian government invests C$14M to boost beef sector

Meatingplace (free registration required) | Posted on July 17, 2018

The Canadian government has announced an investment of up to C$14 million to help the country’s beef industry to boost sustainability and exports, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada said in a news release.  Ottawa’s contribution to the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC) adds to the BCRC’s own contribution of up to C$7.6 million, for a total investment of about C$21 million. BCRC is a division of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association, under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, AgriScience Clusters.


Announces 1.6 Million for Support Projects in Rural Communities

My Panhandle | Posted on July 15, 2018

Governor Scott announced that more than $1.6 million has been awarded to support projects in rural communities across the state. This grant funding was provided through the Rural Infrastructure Fund to help with the planning, preparation and financing of infrastructure projects in rural communities. These projects will result in job creation, capital investment and the strengthening and diversification of Florida’s rural economies. During Gov. Scott’s time in office, every county has had a decrease in unemployment and every region in Florida has experienced job growth.


Virginia regulators accuse Mountain Valley Pipeline of erosion violations

The Roanoke Times | Posted on July 14, 2018

Virginia regulators have accused the builder of the Mountain Valley Pipeline of environmental violations punishable by fines and repair mandates, saying the company’s failure to install and maintain erosion-control devices has fouled 8,800 feet of streams in six locations.The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality gave Robert Cooper, project manager for EQT Corp. in Pittsburgh, a nine-page notice of violations on Monday. The energy company, which hopes to fill the line with natural gas by the end of the year and is permitted to continue working, has 10 days to respond.Five months into tree-clearing, grading and digging needed to bury the pipe, the $3 billion project faces possible state enforcement action for the first time. West Virginia previously notified EQT of alleged violations on that state’s portion of the pipeline.


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