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Rural roundtable discussion to be held BROKEN BOW - The be provided. For more inCenter for Rural Affairs will formation, visit www.cfra. host a community roundta- org. ble discussion at 6 p.m. Saturday in Broken Bow. The discussion will be held at LB Custom Chrome and Detail at 1335 S. B St. The Center for Rural Affairs is dedicated to strength- 1 ening rural small busi- 1 nesses, farms, ranches and communities. The discussion is an effort for the center's staff and board to hear about challenges the region faces and possible solutions. Light refreshments will ,.





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Choosing Change for BY John Crabtree,, Center for Rural -Affairs ' If the Obama White House and - Congress hope to fulfill their promises to reform the health care system for all Americans, they must address the fundamental health care inequities that _






have sitisen in-mtal America. In particular, they should address the physical plant and technology needs of rural health care facilities, provide adequate resources to cover unserved or underserved rural areas, and fix insurance problems that cause financial stress for rural families and rural health care providers alike. Rural America's financially stressed health care system is an expression of public policy choices. Medicare and Medicaid provide about 60 percent of rural hospital revenues. But Medicaid and Medicare reimbursement rates remain generally below actual costs of services provided. These policy choices were made by people - Presidents, Governors, Senators, Representatives ... and the people in those positions can choose a different path. Mpreovg, by many .estimates, nearly half of the under-insured are facing collection or legal action over medical debts, increasing financial stress for rural families and rural health care providers. All of these issues conspire against rural America's web of small hospitals, clinics and nursing homes, bringing many close to the brink of closure. Thin financial margins also prevent rural facilities from making crucial investments in technology and physical plant upgrades. Changing these circumstances is essential if the promise of health care reform is to be fulfilled. For more information:








Out of crisis often comes great things By Elisha Greeley Smith,

Center for Rural Affairs


With times of econoniic crisis come great opportunities for entrepreneurs, if we are willing to invest in microenterprise development. A recent Center for Rural Affairs' report found that i~viiestiilgin entrepreneurial developtnent paid big dividends during the last recent recession (2000-2003), and continuing such investment could help Nebraska weather this current economic recession. Employn~entin Nebraska attributable to microenterprises (businesses with 5 or fewer employees) actually grew by nearly five percent while all other private, non-farm employnient fell by nearly one percent during that last

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recession. According to the report, Economic Outcomes of State Investment In the Nebraska Microenterprise Development Act , a $1.5 million annual appropriation to the Nebraska Microcnterprise Development Act would potentially result in 184 to 198 microenterprise businesses created or expanded with assistance from the program, creation of 294 to 317 jobs across the state, creation of $5.6 million to $8.6 million in additional income in Nebraska households (business owners and employees), creation of over $1.1 million in household asset growth in its first year. economic outcornes in Nebraska of over $6 million to nearly $10.5 niillion in one year, and potential economic out-

comes in Nebraska of $25 million to $41 million after five years. The Governor's budget recommendation released iq January 2009 recommended cutting funds for the Act. Nebraska Legislators should not turn their backs on rural main streets at the precise time when investing in entrepreneurial development can help revitalize rural conlmunities and reinvigorate Nebraska's economy For a full copy of the report: .. - .-. Contact Elisha Greeley Smith, Center for Rural Affairs, at, p p


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Pheasants Forever 10th nationally NCDC Executive Director SimonsonOlson receives BEBe Extra Mlle Award in 2008 Education Outreach Kristin Simonson-Olson,Executive Director of the North Central Development Center in Ainsworth, was the recipient of the REAP Extra Mile Award. She has been instrumental in assisting economic development in the three-county area. Kristin was a driving force in passage of a local sales tax initiative ustng LB 840 to establish a local revolving loan fund to help businesses with their start up and expansion capital needs. The CDBG RevolvingFund has also been used to utmost for business development. Kristin has been an excellent collaborative partner with REAP, referring clients for.assistance with business plans and financial projections. Anytime a possibility of conducting training sessions in the area arises, help comes from Kristin's office In setting up the training and promoting the activity. The meeting room at the development center is readily available for trainings and meetings with clients. Kristin alsoassists BEae by serving on the BEBP Loan Committee and reviewing loans in the area. Kristin Simonson-Olsonbecame Executive Director of the North Central Development Center in December of 2005. Located in Ainswoi-th,the center serves Brown, Rock and Keya Paha counties. The award was presented during the 2009Wal Affairs meeting.

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'i Profile: 111 - Center for Rural Afhirs Recipient: John Crabtree




who would otherwise engage In BYBAM BURBACR N~RTIBABT Nsm. Nzm S r m day-to-day labor and manageLINCOLN -Despite the failure ment, but are prevented from of a similar bill last year. and the performing these duties because opposition of a couple of largefarm of physlcal or mental impairment organizations, Dist. No. 40 Sen. that substantially limits major life CapDierks continues to champion activities." he said. LB593 goes beyond 1300 by the small family farm by introducInga measure (LB593)that would allowing five or fewer unrelated ban corporate ownership of farms lndividual farmers or ranchers to and ranches in Nebraska before. join together to form a farm entity. the Agriculture Committee. The only stlpulation is that all of Dlerks described the purpose the farmers and ranchers must provide dapto-daylabor and manof the legislation. 'LB593 is a bill to honor the agement. There Is no requirement 1982 vote of the people for Inltia- a s to where they work on a farm tivc 300 which they placed in the or ranch. "1-300 withstood many legal Nebraska Constitutton," said Dierks. *Nebraskavoters supported challenges during the 25 years It the concepts found in Initiative was in effcct." said Dlerks. Three county residents testlAed 300 which restricted non-family farm corporations from acqulring. regarding LB593. or otherwiseobtaining an interest, 'I had been afarmer full-timeall ivi~eti~rt~ icgai. ber~eiiciaior 0th- oimy iife untii being elected county erwlse, in any tltle to real estate commissioner." said Frederick used for farming or ranching in Pinkelman of Wynot. 'We need thls state. or engaging in farming LB593 tolevel the playingfleld. so or ranching.' younger people can compete and "LB593 was drafted by incor- get involved in farmtng." Scott Klnkaid of Hartington porating the original concepts of 1-300withadJustmentsmade from wants theability to Lncorporate his recent courtdecistons that raised farm. if profitable. 'It means a lot questions regarding violations to me to be able to make a buck of the commerce clause and the or profit if I want." he said. -We need the legislation to supAmericans u?th Dlsabilitles Act." Dierks said. *Farmersand ranch- port the famlly farm,"said Rodney ers from other states may J o h a Flaugh ofHartington. "Wealready farm or ranch entity in Nebraska give corporations huge tax hcenas long as they provide day-to-day tives, not available to the small labor and day-to-daymanagement farmer. Chuck Hassebrouck. directorof where they are located. Also, made consideration is given for people, -eht

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three points about the bffl: '1) The blll puts no restrictions on any individual; '2) The family-operatedfarm is the best form of farm and ranch for agriculture; and "3) The bill stmply restricts who may have llrntted liability. When incorporated, liability may be shifted to a neighbor. while the corporation waIks away," said Hassebrouck. John Hansen, president of the Nebraska Farmers Union. said that It would be preferable to have the provision In the State Constitution rather than as a state statute, 'so we don't backslide if the Legislature should repeal or change it Ln the future.' Mark McHargue, of the Farm Bureau, said. 'The measure supports family-owned farms, but restricts how farmers can meet the challenges of the industry." Brandon Hunnlcutt, of the Nebraska Corngrowers Association said. "Children of farmers often don't have the resources to take over the family farm operation. so they must sell or lease the farm and move to where they can make more money, taking population and revenue from rural comrnunities," said Hunnicutt. 'LB593 makes It easier for beginning farmers to stay on the farm and compete." 'The bIllwould help restore Nebraska as we know it and restore our heritage,"said Clint Holmdorf of Rising City.

Profile: 111 Center for Rural Affairs Recipient: John CraMree

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