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Ranchers fined $100,000 for cattle neglect

December 31, 2014 --

cattlebadColumbia County ranchers fined $100,000 for cattle neglect

Two Columbia County ranchers, William Holdner and Jane Baum, were convicted of first –degree animal neglect and fined more than $100,000. In addition, they were banned from owning livestock in the future. They could have spent a year in jail but instead were given five years’ probation. Two years ago, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office and the Oregon Humane Society seized 170 commercial cattle from the ranch. Veterinarians found that many of the animals were suffering from severe malnutrition and some had eye and other untreated diseases.

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Farm Bureau announces 2014 awards

December 29, 2014 --

Oregon-Farm-Bureaufbaward2014
By Oregon Farm Bureau

Oregon Farm Bureau announces award recipients from 82nd OFB Annual Meeting

Award recipients honored during the 82nd OFB Annual Meeting in Gleneden Beach, Dec. 10-11, 2014 here:

· Klamath County’s Tracey Liskey inducted into Oregon Farm Bureau Hall of Fame
· Jackson County’s Ron Bjork inducted into Oregon Farm Bureau Hall of Fame
· Baker County’s Peggy Browne elected as Oregon Farm Bureau 1st Vice President
· Multnomah County’s Angela Bailey elected OFB 2nd VP & honored with Outstanding Farm Bureau Woman Award
· Oregon Farm Bureau thanks retiring OFB Board members

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Central Oregon jobs & water bill passess

December 24, 2014 --

Congressman Greg Walden,

Legislation written by Senator Jeff Merkley and Representative Greg Walden to improve water management and grow jobs in Central Oregon has become law now that the President has signed the Crooked River Collaborative Water Security and Jobs Act. The legislation was unanimously approved by the Senate and House late last week, delivering Central Oregon a major victory towards improved water certainty and a stronger foundation to grow the economy and create jobs.

“After many years of hard work, our Central Oregon jobs and water plan is now the law of the land. This bill is a win for jobs in Central Oregon. It provides much needed water to Prineville for city residents and economic development, ensures certainty for farmers, improves fish habitat for tribes and other fishermen, paves the way for energy generation at Bowman Dam, and protects recreation. I’d like to again thank everyone who came together on this important bill, and pledge that I’ll work hard to ensure that it is implemented promptly,” Walden said.

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OSU’s $3M to study plant disease

December 22, 2014 --
(Agrobacterium tumefaciens creates cancer-like galls on the roots of plants such as Gaillardia. Photo by OSU Plant Clinic)

Oregon State University plans to use a $3 million grant to study two groups of bacteria that result in millions of dollars in losses annually to the nation’s nursery industry.

Researchers will study Agrobacterium tumefaciens and Rhodococcus fascians, which deform hundreds of common landscape plants, including hostas, Shasta daisies, petunias and pansies.

These bacterial pathogens are of particular concern in Oregon, where the greenhouse and nursery industry contributes more than $745 million to the Oregon economy annually. Some growers report losses of up to $100,000 a year to gall-forming bacterial diseases.

The four-year grant, from the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, will help determine how these pathogens are introduced into nurseries and how they establish and persist; develop new approaches to improve detection and control; and help nursery workers recognize and prevent the spread of the pathogens.

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Farm Bureau on Cuba policy

December 19, 2014 --

farm-bureua-usa
By American Farm Bureau Federation

“The American Farm Bureau Federation strongly supports President Obama’s move toward normalized relations with Cuba. Farm Bureau has long called for a removal of trade restrictions with Cuba, and we believe expanded trade with the U.S. can serve as a cornerstone for additional reforms.

“The president’s opening to Cuba promises to improve trade conditions by making it easier for Cuba to buy U.S. agricultural and food products. This is welcome news for our nation’s farmers and ranchers.

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The problem of conservation

December 18, 2014 --

forestby Bill J. Kluting, concerned Oregonian

So-called conservation groups like Oregon Wild, Cascadia Wildlands, Center for Biological Diversity and other groups are following an agenda. You have to give them “credit” for what they have accomplished in the past and what they look to do in the future.

They have successfully used the federal and state courts to tie the hands of the U.S. Forest Service, BLM, State Forestry Departments and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife – preventing them from ensuring our forests are protected and managed properly.

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Wyden, Merkely, Walden pledge Timber funds renewal

December 17, 2014 --

capitol-congressFederal forest payments not renewed
By Oregon Tax News,

For the first time since the program began, Congress did not extend the Secure Rural Schools Act, which expired this year. Under the program, the government paid compensation to heavily forested rural counties that were hurt financially by federal regulations that reduced timber harvests on public land. Last year, Oregon received $107 million in federal forest payments. Since the program’s inception in 2000, many rural counties in Oregon have relied heavily on these payments to fund their schools and maintain fundamental services such as road repair and construction, law enforcement, firefighting, and public health.

Last week, the House passed the energy bill with a provision in it to extend Federal forest payments for four more years, but the Senate removed that provision. The more than $1.5 billion would have gone to 700 rural counties in 39 states, mostly in the South and West.

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Farm Bureau urging resolution in West Coast port dispute

December 15, 2014 --

Oregon-Farm-BureauBy Oregon Farm Bureau

Farm Bureau urging resolution in West Coast port dispute

Despite a surprising lack of coverage in the media, the West Coast port labor dispute still rages on, and is in fact, worsening and in need of federal intervention. Since May, the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Assn. (which runs two ports in California) have been in labor contract negotiations, unfortunately with little success. Now, West Coast ports are starting to experience crisis levels of congestion as more ships are unable to load or unload.

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Greg Walden: Boosting Ag research

December 10, 2014 --


Congressman Greg Walden,

Boosting economic opportunities, ag research in Eastern Oregon

Earlier this year, the House unanimously passed a bill I wrote to boost economic opportunities in Hermiston and allow important agriculture research to continue at the OSU research station there. Since the Senate hasn’t passed it yet, I worked to include this common-sense bill in a larger package of public lands bills agreed to by House and Senate leaders. Inclusion in this legislative agreement paves the way for it to be passed into law this month, and it passed the House again last Thursday.

This common-sense plan is a win for jobs and farming in eastern Oregon’s fastest growing community and the Columbia Basin’s strong agriculture economy as a whole. By repealing an antiquated federal provision, this bill provides an opportunity to grow Hermiston’s economy while allowing the flexibility needed for valuable, local agriculture research to continue.

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Post office held Ag voters guide until after election

December 8, 2014 --

By Oregonians for Food and Shelter

OFS Voters’ Guide – A Message From Scott Dahlman

We have heard from a significant number of our members that our OFS Voters’ Guides were not delivered prior to the election, and for some members, not even until early December. Please accept our sincerest apologies for that. We sent our Guides out in mid-October using the same class of mail we always use and were shocked to find out that they were not delivered in a timely fashion. It appears that some post offices held onto the mail for weeks before sending them out for delivery.

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