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GOV. JONES APPOINTS PANEL TO ASSESS KEY AG ISSUES; COMPREHENSIVE REPORT, RECOMMENDATIONS EXPECTED BY MID-1993

 GOV. JONES APPOINTS PANEL TO ASSESS KEY AG ISSUES;
 COMPREHENSIVE REPORT, RECOMMENDATIONS EXPECTED BY MID-1993
 FRANKFORT, Ky., Oct. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Kentucky Gov. Brereton Jones today announced the formation of a special task force which by mid-1993 will assess and make recommendations on issues, policies and programs affecting agriculture production statewide.
 American Farmland Trust (AFT), a national farmland conservation organization based in Washington, has been retained to work with the panel on the assessment and recommendations. The project is being funded by a $50,000 grant from the Ashland Oil Foundation of Ashland, Ky.
 Named to the task force today were Kentucky State Rep. Bill Lear; Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ed Logsdon; Kentucky Farm Bureau President William R. Sprague; University of Kentucky College of Agriculture Professor Craig Infanger; Western Kentucky University Agriculture Department Head and Professor Luther B. Hughes Jr.; Versailles, Ky., farmer Hampton (Hoppy) Henton Jr.; and the governor's wife, Elizabeth Jones, who is actively engaged in the family's farming business. During its year-long review, the panel is expected to examine statewide farmland conservation programs, right- to-farm laws, ag districting, economic development opportunities, farmland loss, the state's agriculture tax structure, sustainable agriculture and related areas.
 "The agriculture industry within the state of Kentucky is a $3.2 billion business," said Gov. Jones. "I strongly believe that we must do all we can to protect and preserve its unique character and long-term economic viability."
 AFT President Ralph Grossi said his organization welcomes the opportunity to participate in the project. "Agriculture is still a strong and thriving business within the state of Kentucky," he said. "We are looking forward to working with the panel and identifying ways to ensure a healthy future for the farmers and farmlands of Kentucky."
 In addition to actual crop and commodity sales, Kentucky's agricultural industry directly provides jobs for 250,000 and generates as much as $20 billion in related sales and services annually. In recent times, factors such as low prices, urban sprawl and inheritance taxes have forced a growing number of farmers into selling their farms.
 The American Farmland Trust is a private, non-profit membership organization working to stop the loss of productive farmland and promote farming practices that will lead to a healthy environment. The group meets all the current standards of the National Charities Information Bureau. Its national offices are at 1920 N St. N.W., Suite 400, Washington, D.C. 20036. Minimum annual membership is $20.
 -0- 10/7/92
 /CONTACT: Gary Kozel of American Farmland Trust, 202-659-5170, or after hours, 202-466-5591/ CO: American Farmland Trust ST: Kentucky IN: SU:


MH -- DC014 -- 7467 10/07/92 12:35 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 7, 1992
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