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Enrollment for New Dairy Farm Risk Management Program to Begin Sept. 2

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, Aug. 28, 2014 — Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that starting Sept. 2, 2014, farmers can enroll in the new dairy Margin Protection Program. The voluntary program, established by the 2014 Farm Bill, provides financial assistance to participating farmers when the margin – the difference between the price of milk and feed costs – falls below the coverage level selected by the farmer.
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USDA to Invest $45 Million to Improve Water Quality in Lake Champlain

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 11:00pm
BURLINGTON, VERMONT, Aug. 28, 2014-– Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that up to $45 million will be provided to protect and improve soil and water quality in the Lake Champlain Basin in Vermont over the next five years.
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Interior, USDA Partnership Protects and Restores Important Central Arizona Watershed

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 11:00pm
PAYSON, Arizona, Aug. 27, 2014 – Interior Deputy Secretary Michael Connor and Agriculture Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment Robert Bonnie joined state, local and private partners today to mark the signing of a new joint watershed restoration agreement for C.C. Cragin Reservoir in Central Arizona. The agreement is a pilot project of the Western Watershed Enhancement Partnership, aimed at reducing the risks of costly wildfires and their impact on western watersheds as part of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan.
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USDA Announces $200 Million to Promote Innovation in SNAP Employment and Training Programs

Sun, 08/24/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, Aug. 25, 2014 – The U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced that up to $200 million in competitive grants is available for state SNAP agencies to design and conduct employment and training (E&T) pilot projects to help Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants find jobs and increase their earnings.
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USDA Continues Commitment to Hurricane Sandy Recovery

Sun, 08/24/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, Aug. 25, 2014 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that up to $99 million in conservation funding will be provided to assist Hurricane Sandy victims in Connecticut, New Jersey and New York. Funding will be used to enroll 671 acres of hurricane-damaged property into permanent floodplain easements, while also making affected communities more resilient to future flooding and storm surges.
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Food Bank Competition Enters Final Week

Sun, 08/24/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, Aug. 25, 2014 – A friendly competition among the nation’s food banks to sign up the most donors in the U.S. Food Waste Challenge is drawing to a close, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Feeding America will determine a winner in early September.
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USDA Reopens Chinese Market Access for California Citrus

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 11:00pm
Washington, D.C. – Aug. 22, 2014 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that California citrus farmers will be able to resume exports to China this season. California citrus exports are valued at $30 million annually.
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New Report Shows Budget Impact of Rising Firefighting Costs

Tue, 08/19/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, August 20, 2014—Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced a new report showing that as the cost of fighting forest fires has rapidly increased over the last 20 years, the budgets for other forest programs, including those that can help prevent and mitigate fire damage, have substantially shrunk.
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USDA Announces $25 Million for Agricultural Entrepreneurs to Turn Commodities into Value-Added Products

Mon, 08/18/2014 - 11:00pm
LOUDON, N.H., Aug. 19, 2014 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today highlighted the importance of rural entrepreneurs to the U.S. economy and announced investments to help rural businesses grow, diversify and create jobs.
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Arctic Grayling Does Not Warrant Protection Under Endangered Species Act Due to Collaborative Partnerships

Mon, 08/18/2014 - 11:00pm
MONTANA, August 19, 2014 -– The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced today its finding that the Upper Missouri River Distinct Population Segment (DPS) of the Arctic grayling does not warrant protection under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
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More than 1.6 Million Worldwide to Benefit from USDA International Assistance Program

Mon, 08/18/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, Aug. 19, 2014 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service today announced funding for seven international projects through the 2014 Food for Progress Program. In total, more than 1.6 million people will directly benefit from the program this year.
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USDA Invests New Conservation Funds to Improve Lake Erie Water Quality

Mon, 08/18/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, August 19, 2014--Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that $2 million in conservation funds will be sent to Ohio to help implement conservation techniques that will help improve water quality. The Secretary said USDA is also partnering with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) to expand “boots-on-the-ground” capacity in the area and will be contributing an additional $1 million in technical assistance which will in turn be leveraged by the NFWF along with other public and private entities.
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Parents Projected to Spend $245,340 to Raise a Child Born in 2013, According to USDA Report

Sun, 08/17/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, August 18, 2014 - Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released its annual report, Expenditures on Children and Families, also known as the Cost of Raising a Child.
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USDA Funds Broadband Expansion in Rural Minnesota, North Dakota and Texas

Thu, 08/14/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, Aug. 15, 2014 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today awarded nearly $40 million in loans for new or improved broadband service in rural parts of Minnesota, North Dakota and Texas.
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USDA Seeks Applications for Grants to Increase Economic Opportunity and Improve the Quality of Life in Rural Areas

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, Aug., 13, 2014 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that USDA is seeking applications for grants that will be awarded to organizations to provide critical financial and technical assistance to recipients to develop and strengthen their capacity to carryout housing, community facilities and community and economic development projects.
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Agriculture Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden Announces Funding for Research to Benefit Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, Aug. 12, 2014 — Today, Agriculture Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden announced the availability of $400,000 in funding to establish the Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers Policy Research Center.
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USDA Announces Selection of Advisory Committee Members to Help Guide Management of Public Forests and Grasslands

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, August 12, 2014—Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the selection of 21 new members to the Planning Rule Federal Advisory Committee (FACA), which provides guidance and recommendations on management of America’s national forests on Planning Rule implementation of the 2012 Planning Rule.
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Statement from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on the Retirement of Juan M. Garcia

Wed, 08/06/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, August 7, 2014—U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack today made the following statement on the retirement of USDA Farm Service Agency Administrator Juan M. Garcia:
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USDA Partners with States, Tribes to Improve Public Access on Private Lands

Wed, 08/06/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, August 7, 2014—Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said today that the Department of Agriculture will partner with nine State agencies and with the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakima Nation to increase recreational and economic opportunities on private lands. Funding is provided through USDA’s Voluntary Public Access and Habitat Incentive Program (VPA-HIP), authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.
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U.S. Forest Service Will Award $14 Million for Working Forests

Tue, 08/05/2014 - 11:00pm
WASHINGTON, August 6, 2014 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that the U.S. Forest Service will award more than $14 million in funding from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) to seven Forest Legacy Program projects aimed at protecting over 28,000 acres of working forests.
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