News Update
March 15, 2007

Alberta Gets $40M for BSE Prevention

Alberta, Canada, will receive $40 million to help its beef industry prepare for new feed rules being implemented to prevent the spread of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), reports.

The government funding will help companies comply with the regulations, set to take effect July 12 and meant to prohibit certain animal tissues from entering any type of animal feed.

USDA Awards Weather Radio Transmitter Grants

Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns March 13 announced the award of more than $415,000 in grants for weather radio transmitters to extend the coverage of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio All Hazards (NWR) early warning system to seven rural communities.

“With the tragedy of the tornadoes hitting towns in Arkansas, Missouri, Alabama and Georgia recently, we have heard national broadcasters saying everyone should have a NOAA Weather Radio,” Johanns said. “These seven grants to rural communities who do not have coverage from NOAA Weather Radio Transmitters will help save lives.”

The NWR is a nationwide network of radio stations broadcasting 24 hours a day from National Weather Service offices to alert people of approaching dangerous weather and other emergencies, including natural, environmental and public safety alerts. Thousands of people die or lose property annually because they did not know soon enough about hazards, disasters or emergencies.

The NWR covers all major metropolitan areas and many smaller cities and towns. The Weather Radio Transmitter grant program helps provide coverage to those rural areas that do not have NWR coverage or are poorly covered.

The grants awarded today are funded using residual funds from grant projects that were completed under budget. The recipients of the seven Weather Radio Transmitter grants are:

  • City of Nenana — Alaska $39,438
  • Consolidated Telcom — North Dakota $54,767
  • Custer Public Power District — Nebraska $59,600
  • Virginia, Department of Emergency Management — Halifax County $69,600
  • Virginia, Department of Emergency Management — Wythe County $48,800
  • Gogebic County Office of Emergency Services — Michigan $71,642
  • Tennessee Valley Electric Cooperative-Tennessee — Wayne County $72,000

Details of the grant recipients and projects and further information on rural development programs are available on USDA’s web site at or at local USDA Rural Development offices.

Urban, Community Forestry Grants Announced

Secretary Johanns has announced more than $589,000 in federal cost-share grants to eight organizations with urban and community forestry projects nationwide. The approximately $589,000 in funds will be matched by recipient organizations that will contribute an additional $629,000.

Recipients of the 2007 cost-share grants were selected in a competitive process, based on criteria developed by the National Urban and Community Forestry Advisory Council (NUCFAC). NUCFAC reviewed the proposals and made its recommendations to the U.S. Forest Service, which awards the grants.

The eight recipients are Openlands Project, Chicago, Ill.; The Student Conservation Association, Arlington, Va.; Utah State University, Logan, Utah; West Virginia University, Morgantown, W. Va.; Auburn University, Auburn, Ala.; American Forests, Washington, D.C.; Louisiana Public Broadcasting, Baton Rouge, La.; and the Alliance for Community Trees, Beltsville, Md.

For more information, visit

Range Beef Cow Symposium Set

The 2007 Range Beef Cow Symposium, hosted by Colorado State University (CSU), will be at the Larimer County Fairgrounds Dec. 11-13. The event is a biannual educational symposium designed as in-service training for cow-calf ranchers. It will feature well-known speakers who will provide updates on production topics in the areas of beef industry issues, genetics, reproduction, range and forage management, cattle health, beef nutrition and more.

The symposium is a joint effort of the Extension services from Colorado State University (CSU), the University of Wyoming, the University of Nebraska and South Dakota State University. Mark your calendars and watch for further information.

For additional information, contact Jack Whittier, CSU Extension beef specialist, at (970) 491-6233 or; or Nancy Weiss, Extension secretary, at (970) 491-7640 or

— compiled by Crystal Albers, associate editor, Angus Productions Inc.

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