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Recovery Act Funding Provides a Bookmobile for Rural West Virginia

A new bookmobile, funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

A new bookmobile, funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Now, for the latest on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act) funding Raleigh County Public Library was awarded through the USDA Rural Development Community Facilities program to obtain a new bookmobile. Read more »

Missouri Proclamation Confirms Regional Partnership to Promote Economic Development

Earlier this month, I was privileged to participate in the signing of a Proclamation confirming a regional partnership through the Stronger Economies Together (SET) Program, one of the Presidential Initiatives.   The Old Trails Regional Tourism Partnership has been chosen as one of the initial two regions in Missouri to participate in the Stronger Economies Together (SET) program. This will be pilot program utilizing an integrative approach to assessing, composing and executing a regional economic development plan that capitalizes on the assets and complies with the goals of the region. Read more »

Final Days to Get Involved and Vote on Your Favorite New Game or App!

The Apps for Healthy Kids public voting period concludes this Saturday, August 14, at noon (EDT), and there is no better time than now to add your voice and vote to the competition.  To date we have received over 17,000 votes on the apps recently created by the American public in the effort to address the very serious problem of childhood obesity. We started this competition with a goal of generating innovative apps that are engaging and educational to the target audience – tweens and their parents. And the best way to judge that goal is to get the American public involved so we need you to go online try out these apps and cast your vote. Read more »

West Virginia Volunteer Fire Department Receives USDA Funds to Purchase Equipment to Save Lives

The Volunteer Fire Department in Webster Springs, West Virginia recently used USDA Rural Development funds to purchase a 12-lead cardiac monitor and a thermal imaging camera. Read more »

USDA Urges Consumers: Check Your Freezers

Written by Lisa Wallenda Picard, Food Safety and Inspection Service

Last night, USDA’s Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) announced a recall of frozen ground beef products. Working closely with our partners at California’s Department of Public Health, investigators were able to connect several illness with products sold.  Because E. coli O157:H7 is a potentially deadly bacterium, USDA is asking consumers to check their freezer and immediately discard any product that is the subject of this recall. Read more »

Survey Says: Farmers Markets on the Rise

Written by Rayne Pegg, Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service

We are proudly in the middle of the eleventh annual National Farmers Market Week as declared by USDA.  This year, Secretary Vilsack marked this important milestone with an official Declaration acknowledging the role farmers markets play in stimulating local economies, strengthening communities and supporting farmers.

As part of National Farmers Market Week, we’re also announcing the results of our latest farmers market survey, and the numbers are impressive: 6,100 farmers markets are now operating across the country – a stunning 16% growth from last year!  These markets are bringing folks together in cities, towns, suburbs and rural areas of every state in the nation, and they have on offer the freshest produce, meats, cheese, flowers, breads, and other products from their surrounding farms and ranches.

Read more »