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Local News

Michigan State University Extension's value highlighted at Barry County Commission

In a report to Barry County Commissioners Tuesday, Michigan State University Extension District 7 Coordinator Erin Moore gave a broad overview of the wide range of programs, research and resources the extension brings to the county.

 

Commissioner and dairy farmer Heather Wing introduced Moore, saying she started in the position this spring, replacing Don Lehman who retired. MSUE is for everyone in the community to use its extension programs to help with what the community is doing, Wing said.

 

Moore said their mission is to create community partnerships. They work through four institutes; Agriculture and Agribusiness, Children and Youth, Health and Nutrition and Greening Michigan, its economic development effort.

 

The 4-H programs, with 1,000 kids enrolled as members, 42 Barry County Clubs, 761 people taking part in specialtity programs, 80 teen volunteers and 300 adult volunteers, fosters  youth development through entrepreneurship, learning animal science and disease transmission, biosecurity training, the culinary arts, and partnerships with the Barry County United Way and Sunny Crest Youth Ranch.

 

MSUE supports many more areas in the county through its resources, research, workshops and demonstrations. Dairy production, keeping people healthy, making the most of natural assets, local government finance and policy, food safety and personal finance, agriculture and natural resources are targets of MSUE.

 

“The network extension has in trainings for businesses, health, is huge, but something we underutilize. I can’t toot extension’s horn enough,” Wing said. “On the agriculture side, we’ve had so much support over the years we sometimes forget all the work they do…but as a community we underutilize it.”

District 7 covers Barry, Kent, Ottawa and Allegan counties. //

 

The commission also considered several recommendations from last week’s committee of the whole meeting, approving:

 

*the taxable value report L-4046 and L-4028 given by county Equalization Director Timothy Vandermark,

 

*recreation grants from the county Parks & Recreation Board totaling $10,000,  awarded to municipalities for recreation projects,

 

*the creation of a full-time assistant to the Control One Monitor at the county jail,

 

*the 2017 Homeland Security grant program agreement for Barry County, with Van Buren County as judiciary, and

 

*budget amendment A-18.

 

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