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I Forum set on health care, rural America SIOUX CITY - Farm, faith, rural and labor organizations from Iowa and Nebraska will join forces to cohost a forum on health care reform and rural America in Sioux City. The forum will run from 6 to 8 p.m. April 22 in Rooms L416 and L417 at Western Iowa Tech Community College, 4647 Stone Ave. Park in lot 3 and enter entrance

reform questions for members of Congress. Questions should be submitted by Friday so senators and representatives have time to respond. Health Care for America Now is a national grassroots campaign of more than 700

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The forum, co-hosted by the Center for Rural Affairs at Lyons, Neb., the Iowa Farmers Union, Iowa Citizen Action Network, Health Care for America Now Iowa, Nebraska Appleseed, SEIU Change That Works and Health Care for America Now Nebraska,will focus on the challenges that rural Americans face in gaining access to affordable health care. For additional information, contact Virginia Wolking at the Center for Rural Affairs by telephone at 1 (402)-687-2103, extension ' 1017, or by e-mail to virginiaw@cfra.org. Everyone is encouraged to contact Wolking with health care

organizations representing 30 million people, including

doctors, nurses, comnlunity organizations, small business owners, faith-based groups, people of color, seniors, children's and women's rights groups and labor unions.


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NEWS-BLADE WEDNESDAY WEEKLY BRIDGEPORT, NE Circulation= 1695

04/08/2009

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$5 Million Available for FMPP Grants April 27, 2009 is the last day to submit applications for t ... r,'SL)Ats ~arrneriMarket - P r o - --motion Program (FMPP) grants. The grants, authorized by the Jarmers Market Promotion ' Program, are targeted to help improve and expand domestic farmers markets, roadside stands, community-supported agriculture programs and other direct producer-to-consumer market opportunities. Approximately $5 million is allocated for the FMPP program. The minimum award per grant is $2,500, with a maximum of $100,000 for anyone proposal. Matching funds are not required. Entities eligible to apply include agricultural cooperatives, local governments, nonprofit corporatictrrs, public health corporaticins, economic developmeit corporations, regional f:irrnors' market authorities and Tribal governments. "'l'he Farmers Market Promotion Program is a great opportunity to help producers and communities cover some of the start-up costs of establishing a a5 local fafn~ersmarket or other form of direct marketing from agr icultural products from pro: ducers to consumers," said Mike Heavrin, Cooperative Development ~ a n a ~ at e r the 1 Center for Rural Affairs. According to Heavrin, farmers markets are good for communities, bringing farniers and consumers together to create a stronger local economy and providing consumers with fresh, affordable produce. And the flexibility of the grants, absence of matching fund re- quirements and the additional hnding provided by Congress ! should allow the Farmers Market Promotion Program to potentially reach a , lot more con~munities, especially nrral communities with markets that are smaller or just starting up. The Farmers Market Proniotion Program was created thtough a recent amendment of the Farmer-to-Consumer Direct Marketing Act of 1976. For more information on the Farmers Market Promotion i Program Grants and how to apply, visit: http:/lwww.ams. usda.gov/FMPP, Or contact Mike Heavrin, at the Center fol.Rural Affairs at (402) 6872103 ext. 1008 or ukeh@cfra.org for assistance. i

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=I Forum on renewable

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WAYNE Wayne State 'College will present a forum on re-. newable energy in Nebraska on Wednesday, April 22, at 6:30 p.m. in the Niobrara Room of the student center. The forum will be followed by a music and a dessert reception. The public is invited and may submit questions for discus-' sion by panel members Robert Byrnes from' Nebraska Re-' newable Energy Systems; David Becker, operations project, manager of the Gavins Point Project; John Richards, engi- . neer, Nebraska Public Power District; Wesley Slaymaker,: vice president of Business Development, EcoEnergy, Mad-. ison, Wis.; Gene Hansen, production superintendent, City of : Wayne; and Wyatt Fraas, assistant director of the Rural Op-: portunities and StewardshipProgram at the Center for Rural ' Affairs. Dr. Barbara Hayford, assistant professor of life science at. : Wayne State, will be the moderator.


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