Rural economic development has been neglected for too long. The mission of United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development, “to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for all rural Americans” is not reflected in funding for rural economic development initiatives.
Three percent of the current fiscal year United States Department of Agriculture budget is dedicated to rural development. Of that three percent, 10 percent is devoted to rural business development—less than one percent of the entire United States Department of Agriculture’s budget (the remainder going to rural housing and utility programs).
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