County Farm Bureaus Earn Honors for Programs, Member Gains
» December 7, 2004 «
Political action, community involvement and membership activities earned awards for county Farm Bureaus, which were honored for their 2004 achievements during the California Farm Bureau Annual Meeting in Sparks, Nev.
Six county Farm Bureaus received awards for outstanding programs of work:
The Butte County Farm Bureau organized a successful campaign to defeat a county initiative that would have banned biotech crops. It also established programs to fight rural crime and assure safe handling of hazardous materials, and maintained active involvement in land-use issues and in educational programs for students and community leaders.
Significant efforts to influence state timber policies and local water issues earned honors for the Mendocino County Farm Bureau, along with its work to organize a successful political fund-raiser and lead the campaign against the nation's first local anti-biotech initiative.
In San Benito County, the local Farm Bureau mounted a successful campaign to defeat a growth-control initiative sponsored by outside environmental groups. It also sponsored candidates' forums, raised money to maintain county trapper services and organized a Farm Day program for local students.
Coalition-building that led to the defeat of a county anti-biotech initiative brought recognition to the San Luis Obispo County Farm Bureau. It also continued its work on water-quality and land-use issues, and maintained a "demonstration farm" and educational activities for students and adults.
The Shasta County Farm Bureau hosted a regional fund-raiser for the Fund to Protect the Family Farm, conducted educational programs for elementary school students, helped the county update the agricultural element to its general plan and worked with county supervisors on agricultural burning rules.
Another successful fund-raiser for the Fund to Protect the Family Farm brought honors to the Tulare County Farm Bureau, which also devoted effort to land-use issues, school gardens and other educational efforts, a youth leadership program and a farm chemical collection program.
The California Farm Bureau also honored 22 county Farm Bureaus for membership gains during 2004.
Topping the list, by achieving 100 percent of overall membership goals and 95 percent voting-member renewal, are the Del Norte and San Mateo County Farm Bureaus. Four county Farm Bureaus achieved 100 percent of goal and 92 percent voting-member renewal: Imperial, Marin, Siskiyou and Ventura.
County Farm Bureaus that reached 92 percent of voting-member renewal included Glenn, Inyo/Mono, Kings, San Joaquin and Santa Barbara. Eleven other counties attained 100 percent of overall goal: Alameda, Amador, Calaveras, Contra Costa, Los Angeles, Nevada, Placer, San Bernardino, Santa Clara, Stanislaus and Tuolumne.
The Imperial and Del Norte County Farm Bureaus received additional recognition for achieving gains in voting membership.
"By representing members on the full range of local and regional issues, county Farm Bureaus demonstrate the value of Farm Bureau membership every day," California Farm Bureau Federation President Bill Pauli said. "The work that we honor at our Annual Meeting shows how county Farm Bureaus go the extra mile to serve their members."
The California Farm Bureau is the state's largest farm organization.
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