Small Towns News

Broadband access is a necessity of modern life

The internet is now considered a basic human right; it is how people find employment, handle their finances, attend college, work and receive medical care. However, not everyone is able to use the internet to its full potential, due primarily to slow speeds. Rural areas are at a disadvantage when it comes to accessing broadband.

Time to call your legislators

With legislative sessions in full swing, it is vital for rural constituents to contact legislators regarding issues that affect our communities. Here are some simple tips for calling your legislators.

Before contacting your legislator, take five minutes to visit their website and learn about their party affiliation, their background, and their stances on your priority issues. This research will help you craft a message that appeals to shared values.

Think beyond biases to create welcoming communities

We all discriminate.

It does not matter if you are a person of color or not, female or male, young or old, gay or straight. We all discriminate.

I’m not talking about intentional discrimination, like denying housing based on gender or the color of skin. I’m talking about nonconscious discrimination that is caused by the way our brains work; and we are completely unaware.

Rural communities and schools are too reliant on property taxes

The Center for Rural Affairs agrees that property taxes are too high and local schools and government entities are too reliant on property taxes. This reliance upon property taxes for education and local government demands even the most comprehensive property tax relief plan receive careful scrutiny as these institutions underpin these existence of rural communities. While we recognize farmers and ranchers often bear the greatest burden, our mission is to support policy that builds strong rural communities and provides opportunity for all rural people.

From the desk of the Executive Director: What if the workers owned it?

The sale and closure of a midsize manufacturing plant in a nearby small town got me thinking.

The business was home-grown, but no one in the next generation was interested in taking the helm. The owners were ready to retire, and they needed to sell the business. 

The buyer was from out of state. The business was profitable, but the new owner had no ties to the local community. 

You know how this ends. 


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