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Posts tagged: Jobs forum

Oregon Business Owners, Community Leaders and Residents Share Success Stories and Frustrations at USDA Jobs Forum in Albany

Panels of economic experts, elected officials, community leaders and state agencies presented information in conjunction with Farm Service Agency (FSA) and Rural Development (RD) for a jointly hosted USDA Forum on Jobs & Economic Growth on January 21. The forum was held in Albany, a community with a 14 percent unemployment rate, well above the national rate. Read more »

South Carolina Business Owners, Residents, Community Leaders Share Ideas on Creating Jobs at USDA Forum

The U.S. Department of Agriculture sponsored a Presidential Roundtable Forum on job creation for South Carolina at Clemson Research and Education Center in Columbia today, bringing together about 60 community leaders to brainstorm solutions to high unemployment numbers and the impact on rural areas.

“This forum provides an opportunity to share ideas on creating jobs and economic opportunities,” said Vernita F. Dore, state director of USDA Rural Development in South Carolina.  “Government can help lay the groundwork for economic growth, but the best ideas for continued growth and job creation often come from local communities. We need the best ideas to share with the Obama Administration.

The roundtable included business owners, residents, state and local officials, union members, non-profit organizations, community leaders, economists, educators and others interested in job creation and economic stability.

“The primary purpose is to put South Carolinians back to work,” said Dore. “We all know that unemployment in our state is one of the highest in the nation, and this forum brings the opportunity to change that. It gives us the chance to remind rural America about the many programs that Rural Development has to address this economy’s problems.”

“Moreover,” Dore continued, “it gives Rural Development the opportunity to remind rural communities that Rural Development stands poised with direct and guaranteed loan and grant programs to finance and help to create jobs and stimulate the economy. We believe that this forum will truly generate ideas for job creation and economic expansion in our state.”

USDA Rural Development works to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for rural families and businesses. Rural Development administers and manages more than 40 housing, business, and community infrastructure and facility programs as laid out by Congress. South Carolina has 108 employees in 11 offices.

These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America. Rural Development has an existing portfolio of more than $125 billion in loans and loan guarantees.

USDA’s Farm Service Agency, also a sponsor for the program, works with farmers, producers and ranchers to improve their economic viability and prosperity. Some of the agency’s efforts include financial assistance with loans for operations, farm equipment, seed and fertilizer and ownership loans to purchase a farm. FSA also implements disaster and conservation programs, and works to procure various commodities to benefit low-income families through domestic food assistance programs. FSA has 36 offices and service centers in South Carolina. FSA personnel assisted farmers in commodity and program payments in FY 2009 of $145.7 million.

Pierce McNair from South Carolina Technical Systems stresses the importance of investing in education for economic development at the Job Forum in Columbia, South Carolina.

Pierce McNair from South Carolina Technical Systems stresses the importance of investing in education for economic development at the Job Forum in Columbia, South Carolina.

Janie Davis from South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs " Small Business does not live by itself."

Janie Davis from South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs " Small Business does not live by itself."

Submitted by Marlous Black and Mack Eubanks of USDA

To learn more, go to the Rural Development and FSA Job Roundtables Schedule, and the News Release, “USDA to Host Roundtables on Jobs, Economic Growth

Business and Community Leaders Join in USDA Jobs Forum in Boulder City, Nevada

Don’t cut education and don’t cut technology! That was one of the main messages coming out of a lively discussion at a Jobs Forum in Boulder City, Nevada on January 14. The forum was sponsored by the Nevada offices of USDA Rural Development and the Farm Service Agency.

The main speaker, Brian Palmer, told how his company, GE Energy, which had lots of places to choose from, picked Minden, Nevada because it has a good environment for business, an excellent technology base, and a strong employee base. He said the last thing state government should do is to cut back on education or technology, since those are the things that will attract businesses and jobs.

There were lots of folks at the Roundtable, including members of the City Council, business people, staff from Senator Harry Reid and Congresswoman Dina Titus’s office—even a few young people who were with adults to find out what might help bring in and keep jobs in Boulder City. The speakers represented big and small businesses and the bottom line was that there are things that we can do to help make the community one that has jobs available for those who want them. It was a great opportunity for a cross section of folks to get together to try to solve one of our biggest problems.

Brian Palmer, Nevada Job Forum
Brian Palmer, keynote speaker at the Boulder City, Nevada Jobs Roundtable, is taped for BCTV broadcast during the first Nevada Jobs Roundtable. Behind him is USDA Rural Development/Nevada State Director Sarah Adler and Duncan McCoy, Mayor Pro Tem of Boulder City.

Submitted by Diana Jennings, Arizona Special Projects Coordinator on behalf of the Nevada Rural Development and Farm Service Agency staff.

To learn more, go to the Rural Development and FSA Job Roundtables Schedule, and the News Release, “USDA to Host Roundtables on Jobs, Economic Growth

Technology, “Green Jobs” Spotlighted at USDA Jobs Roundtable in Tennessee

With unemployment rates above ten percent across the region, families and businesses in West Tennessee are especially hard hit by the economic downturn. Last Thursday, business and other community leaders met federal, state and local economic development officials at the University of Tennessee Extension Experiment Station in Jackson to discuss what can be done to speed recovery and create long-term economic stability across the state. Read more »

Interior Alaska Residents Turn Out for USDA Jobs Forum

The first of four jobs forums in Alaska, sponsored by the USDA Farm Service Agency and Rural Development attracted an audience of about 80 on Thursday.  Participants turned out in Fairbanks to testify about job creation, braving temperatures of -30.

Joining Rural Development State Director Jim Nordlund and Farm Service Agency Executive Director Danny Consenstein at the Fairbanks forum were U.S. Senator Mark Begich; Borough Mayor Luke Hopkins; Fairbanks Economic Development Director Jim Dobson; Jerry Isaac, President of the Tanana Chiefs Conference and University of Alaska Fairbanks Chancellor Brian Rodgers.

Nordlund and Consenstein told the group that the Alaska meetings, and those being held across the Nation, are a direct follow up to a jobs summit held by President Obama in December, and that a report of the Alaska meetings, and the other meetings, will be provided to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack for presentation to the President in February.  The jobs forum included sessions designed to explore pillars of job creation, as outlined by the Secretary.

“We had more than 80 people show up on a frigid (-30) Thursday afternoon” said Nordlund.  “The jobs ideas were constructive, genuine and heartfelt. I’m sure the President and the Congress will welcome these proposals to foster our economic recovery.”  Consenstein said:  “Alaska’s rural areas have unique challenges.  Alaskans from the Interior had great ideas about how broad band, renewable energy and food systems strategies can create much-needed jobs in the region.”

At the start of the forum, it was announced that USDA has obligated $49 million in rural water grant funds to improve sanitation in rural communities and provide jobs to rural residents.  Additional forums will be held in Kotzebue, Juneau and Anchorage.

Alaska Rural Development State Director Jim Nordlund (at podium) speaks during a USDA-Sponsored Jobs Forum in Fairbanks

Alaska Rural Development State Director Jim Nordlund (at podium) speaks during a USDA-Sponsored Jobs Forum in Fairbanks

To learn more, go to the Rural Development and FSA Job Roundtables Schedule, and the News Release, “USDA to Host Roundtables on Jobs, Economic Growth

By Wayne Maloney, Office of Communications

Wyoming Jobs Forum Held in Casper

Approximately 25 Wyoming residents attended a forum on job creation that was hosted by USDA Rural Development and the Farm Service Agency. The forum was held at a hotel in Casper on January 12th, 2010 as a follow up to President Obama’s December 3rd White House briefings on job creation. Read more »