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News stories tagged with "usda"

School cafeterias offer healthier menus

School is getting underway for the year, and cafeteria offerings around the country are getting an overhaul. The USDA has issued new national guidelines for the first time in 15 years. Schools are required to serve more whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, while limiting sodium and fat. Each meal needs to be in a specific calorie range. Breads need to be more than half whole grains.

Today is the first day of school at South Jefferson Central, and district food service director Cindy Overton tells Julie Grant the school is ready to go with the new menu.  Go to full article
Robert Howrigan Junior on his Fairfax, VT dairy farm. The field behind him is prone to runoff.
Robert Howrigan Junior on his Fairfax, VT dairy farm. The field behind him is prone to runoff.

New USDA program to help VT farmers reduce phosphorus loading

Lake Champlain's Missisquoi Bay is plagued by phosphorus pollution. When hot weather comes, the pollution feeds potentially dangerous blue-green algae blooms.

Phosphorus is a common fertilizer, and the excess causing the local problems comes primarily from agricultural runoff. An international study has helped pinpoint the sources around the big bay, which spans the Vermont-Quebec border in the northeast corner of the lake.

Sarah Harris reports on a new USDA program that uses the targeted information to help farmers in the surrounding watershed change their methods and reduce pollution.  Go to full article
Photo: Akwesasne Housing Authority
Photo: Akwesasne Housing Authority

St. Regis Mohawk tribe gets USDA grant to help build diabetes center

The St. Regis Mohawk Tribe will get a $129,000 grant to build a diabetes center, from USDA rural development.

The USDA allotted $206,900 for the facility last year--the center's expected to cost about $3 million.  Go to full article
There are very particular areas they like to go. Maybe on top of the state office building. I see them there at night.

Watertown plans winter "crow hazing"

It's not winter quite yet...but Watertown is already thinking about one recurring winter problem. Every year, the city's population increases dramatically--by the seasonal arrival of 15,000-20,000 crows.

The city considers the crows to be a nuisance and employs a tactic called "crow hazing"--it's generally, although not always, a non-lethal method to convince the crows to go elsewhere.

The city council's in the process of deciding which of several crow hazing services to use for this task.

Nora Flaherty spoke with Elliott Nelson at the city manager's office about Watertown's crow problem, and what "crow hazing" entails.  Go to full article
US Congressman Bill Owens
US Congressman Bill Owens

Federal legislators introduce bill to bring more aid to farmers affected by Irene

US Congressman Bill Owens, with several other New York legislators, has introduced a bill to replenish two federal funds that help farmers rebuild after natural disasters.

The "Post-Irene Emergency Farm Aid Act", is also sponsored by US Representatives Chris Gibson, Maurice Hinche, and Paul Tonko...and Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gilibrand. It calls for 10 million dollars to go to the Farm Service Agency's emergency conservation program, and the Emergency watershed protection program.  Go to full article

Rural internet program will go on in spite of massive cuts to federal funding

The Agriculture Appropriations Act, which passed the U.S. House this afternoon, will cut much of the funding for a program designed to bring better broadband internet to underserved rural areas--including many in the North Country.  Go to full article

USDA loans can help with post-flood rebuilding

USDA Rural Development is reminding people hit by the recent flooding that low-interest loans and grants available through their 504 program may plug gaps left by homeowners' insurance, and help people make needed post-flood home repairs.  Go to full article
Heuvelton presented Sen. Schumer with a commemorative blanket.
Heuvelton presented Sen. Schumer with a commemorative blanket.

Collapsed Oswegatchie Retaining Wall Gets Federal Help

The swollen Oswegatchie River is threatening a heavily-trafficked bridge in the village of Heuvelton. A large amount of spring rain has caused the collapse of a retaining wall which is in danger of falling into the river. If that happens, local officials are worried the river will continue to erode the land and damage the bridge. U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer visited the site yesterday with news that funding to fix the problem is on the way. Jody Tosti has more.  Go to full article

Feds Fall Short of Animal Disease Warnings

A recent report finds that the U-S Department of Agriculture needs to work more closely with Customs inspectors in order to stop foreign animal diseases from hurting livestock in the U-S. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium's Lester Graham reports.  Go to full article

Senator Clinton Says Dairy Farmers Need USDA Aid

Senator Hillary Clinton is urging the USDA to start the National Dairy Program, which would provide New York's dairy farmers with financial assistance. The program is part of the 2002 Farm Bill. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

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