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Rural policy workshops planned in Morris next week

MORRIS - The Center for Rural Affairs and the Center for Small Towns at the University of Minnesota, Morris, are co-hosting workshops to discuss public policy developments that will significantly impact rural communities, including the 2012 Farm Bill and the current super committee charged with deficit reduction.

The first is scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 25 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Old #1 in Morris.

Traci Bruckner with the Center for Rural Affairs, David Fluegel from the Center for Small Towns and Cindy Bigger, an educator and consultant for Bigger Associates, will provide participants with an overview of both local and federal policy initiatives that impact farmers, food, land and small towns.

"We'll also discuss how to communicate with decision makers; the importance of local, state and federal policy; how to influence local decisions that impact you and key issues in the upcoming Farm Bill," said Virginia Wolking, rural policy organizer with the Center for Rural Affairs.

"The Farm Bill is more than just farm subsidies and crop insurance," Wolking continued.

The Farm Bill impacts farmers, ranchers, consumers, small towns and rural mainstreet businesses with investments in conservation, nutrition and school lunches, broadband, housing, small business assistance, rural economic and community development, and much more.

"We are all affected by rural policy," said Wolking. "Join us to find out how you can make your voice heard and to share your ideas with us and other rural leaders who can help you make things happen in your community."

For more information or to RSVP please contact David Fluegel at 589-6453 or, or Virginia Wolking at (402) 687-2100 or