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Category: Agriculture

#AgOutlook and Rural Prosperity

#AgOutlook and Rural Prosperity

It was most gracious of USDA to extend an invitation to me to speak at their annual #AgOutlook conference here in the DC area yesterday – particularly with a focus on Rural Prosperity and all that that entails. I was on their E-Connectivity panel and shared the space with one of the top USDA economists who spend a lot of timing thinking, pondering, measuring and analyzing broadband statistics as well as with a GM of an electric cooperative in Michigan…

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National Farmers Day

National Farmers Day

October 12 was National Farmers Day and it recalled for me the time an NTCA member was making a passionate plea with a Hill staffer on the role that broadband plays in rural America and how that use of technology  feeds into a more robust agriculture economy.  He was stopped in his tracks when the staffer informed him that most of what he was saying was irrelevant because food actually comes from a store. Hmmmm.  It sounds like there is…

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USDA Secretary Perdue Calls “Cutting Red Tape” Discussion

USDA Secretary Perdue Calls “Cutting Red Tape” Discussion

I was finally able to meet our new USDA Secretary Perdue today at his roundtable “rap session” that he and his team had pulled together for today to talk about how to cut red tape at USDA and “liberate America from bureaucracy.”  The Secretary reiterated the White House’s commitment to find ways to streamline processes and eliminate excess regulation in an effort to create jobs and generate economic growth.  All of that is good news for rural America if things…

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Got to Love Sioux Falls!

Got to Love Sioux Falls!

I am traveling back from the Regional Conference in Sioux Falls, South Dakota this week.  The location is ideal given the key leadership role that Senator Thune, local boy gone to Washington, has played in communications policy and his continued active engagement in meeting the challenge of rural broadband deployment.  One of the things I love about this region is that the turn-out is as strong as it is for our “more tropical” locations for these meetings in the Southeast….

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“Make the Dirt Talk”

“Make the Dirt Talk”

What a treat it was on Friday to reconnect with Billy Tiller, former board member for Five Area Telephone Cooperative in Muleshoe, Texas, who served on the board when he was right out of school for 12 years – during some really informative times in this industry. Billy then went on to not only run a large ranch in Texas, but he also started AgPro Exchange, a company that uses data to manage agriculture interests in the 21st Century.  With…

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