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Tag Archives: Agriculture

Ag Dir. Ibach confirmed, after puppy mill complaints aired (AUDIO)

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State Agriculture Director Greg Ibach has been confirmed by the Unicameral, but only after grievances were aired over how the department has handled so-called puppy mills. Ibach, first appointed to the position by Gov. Dave Heineman, has served since 2005. Gov. Pete Ricketts re-appointed him. Problems surfaced during the confirmation hearings before the legislature’s Agriculture […]

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Lawmakers consider higher cap on fee for cattle branding

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A measure to raise the cap on fees Nebraska ranchers pay to brand their cattle is being considered in the Unicameral. Brand Board member Joe Pongratz says the measure is being carried by Senator Al Davis and if approved, would -not- result in a fee increase for those using the program. “This won’t change anybody’s […]

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More Nebraska farmers are becoming remote-control pilots with UAVs

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During the off-season this winter, some Nebraska farmers and ranchers will be kicking the figurative tires on unmanned aerial vehicles, or UAVs, to help with their operations in the spring. Tom Junge, director of the Iowa-Nebraska Equipment Dealers Association, says the small remote-control vehicles essentially come in two types, those that fly like airplanes or […]

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Agriculture officials carefully watching land values

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Statistics from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln shows that as of February 1, 2014, farmland value rose by about 9% from 12 months prior to more than $3,300 an acre. Since that time commodity prices tumbled. Acting U-S Department of Agriculture Chief Economist Rob Johansson says land value changes usually lag behind what is […]

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Lawmakers working to cut property taxes, leave schools unharmed

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Supporters of cuts to property taxes say they will take into account what those cuts mean for school financing. State lawmakers are reviewing a number of proposals to provide property tax breaks to Nebraska, especially to farmers and ranchers. State Sen. Dan Watermeier of Syracuse says the Unicameral must find a way to relieve the […]

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State ag director under fire over “puppy mills”

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Opponents of so-called “puppy mills” are fighting the reappointment of Nebraska Agriculture Director Greg Ibach. Activists testified before state legislators this week that Ibach has allowed the “cruel neglect” of dogs at breeding operations in Nebraska to continue, and worsen, during his time in office. Jay Rempe, at the Nebraska Farm Bureau, says his group, […]

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Omaha man charged in Iowa cattle rustling case, more arrests pending

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A cattle rustling case in southwest Iowa has brought the arrest of a Nebraska man, with warrants issued for two more suspects. Cass County Sheriff Darby McLaren says 57-year-old Ervin Jacob, of Omaha, is in custody on multiple felony charges for allegedly stealing eight cattle from a farm in Lewis over two weeks last May and June. […]

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Nebraska beef exports exceeded $1-billion last year

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A state official says Nebraska beef exports reached a new milestone with record sales during the first 11 months of 2014. State ag director Greg Ibach says there were several factors leading to Nebraska’s beef producers exceeding the $1-billion mark in exports last year. “Worldwide demand is strong and in Nebraska, we’ve put a lot of […]

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Dropping gas prices are helping & hurting ethanol industry

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Gasoline prices are still falling across Nebraska and while it’s great news for motorists, those involved in ethanol production are seeing their profit margins shaved to remain competitive. Nebraska Ethanol Board administrator Todd Sneller says it’s a good news-bad news scenario. “We’ve seen a decline in the margins at ethanol plants but December was an […]

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Rancher reacts to Supreme Court ruling on Keystone XL

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 In a split decision this morning, the Nebraska Supreme Court upheld the state law providing a route for the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline project. The court found the landowners who filed the action against the state law had no standing. One of those landowners, rancher Randy Thompson of Martell, says he’s not only disappointed […]

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Cheap gas prices are treat for drivers, fright for Wall Street

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While gasoline is selling below $2 a gallon in some Nebraska cities, the great news for motorists is cause for alarm for investors. Markets around the globe are showing signs of weakness as crude oil dropped to $50 a barrel, half what it was a year ago. Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says stock markets […]

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Gov. Heineman says agriculture remains Nebraska’s economic base

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Gov. Dave Heineman says the growth of agriculture spurred the great economic growth Nebraska has enjoyed the past few years. And Heineman says agriculture in Nebraska is more diverse than it was 25 years ago. “What I mean by that is the foundation of our economy is agriculture, but agriculture today doesn’t mean just the […]

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Rural Nebraska homeowners see benefits of USDA program

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More than $114-million in federal funding was delivered to Nebraska families for home repairs, rental assistance and home ownership last year. USDA Rural Development housing grants are used in communities of 20,000 or fewer people, according to the program’s state director Maxine Moul. Moul says, “We were able to help more than 1,100 families in […]

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Rural Nebraska homeowners see benefits of USDA program

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More than $114-million in federal funding was delivered to Nebraska families for home repairs, rental assistance and home ownership last year. USDA Rural Development housing grants are used in communities of 20,000 or fewer people, according to the program’s state director Maxine Moul. Moul says, “We were able to help more than 1,100 families in […]

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Sen. Johanns recalls days at USDA fondly (AUDIO)

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Sen. Mike Johanns looks back fondly at his time as Secretary of Agriculture. Johanns is retiring after 32 years in public office, including serving as the director of the United States Department of Agriculture under President George W. Bush. “You know you’re in the cabinet room and there’s no higher board or commission or whatever […]

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