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Congress Approves Energy Tax Credits and Saves 37,000 Jobs

With the last-minute fiscal cliff deal, most of the country breathed a sigh of relief. But those concerned about rural communities and renewable energy had an additional reason to celebrate the deal: the extension of the Investment Tax Credit and Production Tax Credit.

Both are vital tools for an industry that has proven beneficial to rural communities, especially in the Upper Midwest and Great Plains. The wind industry has helped provide new employment opportunities, sources of revenue, and additional sources of income to farmers and ranchers.

A Resolution for Rural America

It’s time for an adult conversation with rural Americans, said Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack. With our shrinking population, he said, we are becoming less relevant to American politics and we need to reverse it.

A Savory REAP Business Just Down the Street

When I first started at the Center for Rural Affairs, I made sure to bring my lunch from home. I figured there wouldn’t be a lot of options in Lyons, the Center’s hometown. So it was a pleasant surprise to find Soup-N-More, a natural foods grocery, just down the street.

As the name suggests, it all began with soup. A few years ago Rebecka Fleischman wanted to do something with her thanksgiving leftovers. So she started dehydrating her own vegetables, throwing in some spices and giving away these ready-made soup mixes to family and friends.

A Land Link Story: Dave and Deb Welsch

A few weeks back, I found myself in a farmhouse kitchen outside of Milford, Nebraska. Dave Welsch was serving me a heaping helping of roast beef and potatoes. I drove down to talk to Dave and his wife Deb about the transition of their farm to a new generation. Unfortunately, Deb, the cook, was sick in bed with the flu.

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