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Press Release No.: PENDING
USDA Office of Communications
Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Holds White House Rural Roundtable to Discuss Economic Growth and Job Creation in Maryland
ANNAPOLIS, Md., July 21, 2011 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today met with Maryland businesses leaders, farmers and ranchers to explore ways federal, state and local officials can work together to improve economic conditions and create jobs. The meeting is part of a series of Rural Roundtables that are being held across the country this summer with senior Administration officials on behalf of the White House Rural Council. Vilsack was joined by Maryland Secretary of Agriculture Buddy Hance for the discussion.
“Rural America makes significant contributions to the security, prosperity, and economic strength of our country,” said Vilsack. “This meeting provided an opportunity to hear directly from Maryland farmers and ranchers about how we can work together to create jobs and grow rural communities and the state’s agricultural economy. The Obama Administration will continue working through the White House Rural Council to support families and businesses in rural Maryland so that their success will pay dividends for all Americans.”
In June, President Obama signed an Executive Order establishing the first White House Rural Council, chaired by Secretary Vilsack, and a series of working groups have been held in recent weeks to advance the Council’s objectives. Since his inauguration, President Obama's Administration has taken significant steps to improve the lives of rural Americans and has provided broad support for rural communities. The Obama Administration has set goals of modernizing infrastructure by providing broadband access to 10 million Americans, expanding educational opportunities for students in rural areas, providing affordable health care, promoting innovation and expanding the production of renewable energy. In the long term, these unparalleled rural investments will help ensure that America's rural communities are repopulating, self-sustaining, and thriving economically.
As chair of the Rural Council, Secretary Vilsack is working to coordinate USDA programs across the government and encourage public-private partnerships to improve economic conditions and create jobs in rural communities. The White House Rural Roundtables are an opportunity for government leaders to hear directly from rural residents from around the country about their ideas on how to grow the economy. This exchange is also intended to educate participants about USDA programs and other the resources within the federal government. USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices to improve the quality of life in rural America.
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