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Stephanie strives to make her land more sustainable

Stephanie O'Keefe always wanted to own land, but felt she didn’t have what it took to make that happen.

“I did not have enough knowledge or muscle for the task,” she said. “However, it became apparent about four years ago that my son-in-law and I could become partners, and between the two of us, accomplish the goal of land management.”

With that in mind, Stephanie aimed to learn as much as she could about managing farmland. One source of continuing education she discovered was through the Center for Rural Affairs’ Women’s Learning Circles.

Lawmakers: don't take away our energy independence

Last week, state lawmakers allied with Iowa’s biggest investor-owned utility to introduce House Study Bill 185. This bill would limit the ability of farms and individuals to produce their own electricity. While other Midwest states are blazing a trail in expanding solar power generation, House Study Bill 185 would set Iowa back as consumers look to cut costs and become energy independent.

Local authorities should control wind siting

We are concerned about a bill in the Legislature regarding the proposal of zoning restrictions on new wind farms in Nebraska. Legislative Bill 373 proposes that all new wind farms will need to comply with zoning standards outlined by the Legislature instead of local county zoning boards.

Emergency services hard to reach with no broadband access

As a small business owner, it’s vital to have internet access; that’s where 95 percent of my sales occur. YouTube videos, as well as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram all require internet, and are extremely important for my business to function. Unfortunately, it is very hard to find inexpensive and reliable internet living in rural Nebraska.

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