Traditionally, the onset of winter meant the end of farmers market season. However, in recent years, winter farmers markets have become increasingly popular. According to the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), there are over 1,200 of these farmers markets operating across the country. This is almost a 38 percent increase from last year. Read more »
We’re getting down to the wire. Congress has until December 31, to pass the Payroll Tax Cut or 160 million Americans will see their taxes go up on January 1st and the typical middle class family will see a tax hike of about $1,000 in 2012.
This isn’t a time for politics. This payroll tax cut is about the economy and how we can take steps now to get our economy on strong footing. It will make a real difference to working Americans. It will help families pay the bills. And it is the right thing to do. Read more »
Are there cost effective steps that rural communities can take to attract and grow competitive, sustainable energy-related businesses? That was the central question being examined by visiting members of the Organization for Economic and Community Development (OECD) during a series of meetings this fall hosted by USDA Rural Development in four states.
OECD economists and USDA staff met with state and local officials as well as non-profit research organizations and private businesses in Maine, New Hampshire, Oregon and Tennessee during October and November. The meetings examined the impact of federal and state investments in renewable energy production and the impact they have had on economic development in rural communities in recent years. Read more »
Cross posted from the Department of Labor blog:
Agricultural businesses large and small rely on seasonal workers. When U.S. workers are not available, employers can utilize the H-2A program to hire temporary foreign workers to perform certain types of agricultural work.
Our Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) is charged by Congress with protecting the wages and working conditions of U.S. workers while also providing a legal means for employers to access foreign workers with critical skills. OFLC is strengthening America’s economic competitiveness through a foreign labor system that reflects our values and meets employers’ needs. Read more »
USDA’s 2012 Agricultural Outlook Forum, Feb. 23-24, will present 25 breakout sessions, including the annual Food Price and Farm Income Outlooks. Economist Richard Volpe with the Economic Research Service (ERS) will discuss USDA’s forecast for food price inflation, including recent historical trends in food expenditure patterns and the relationship between food prices and inflation in the general economy. Read more »