Wednesday, April 23, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

County OKs new farmbudsman position

A priority goal of area farmers got a boost this week with county approval of a new “farm ombudsman” position jointly funded by Yolo and Solano counties.

The person eventually hired to fill the job will be tasked with assisting farmers, ranchers and agriculture-related businesses in the two counties with obtaining permits to expand or create promising ag-related projects.

Creation of a so-called “farmbudsman” position was identified as a key county goal in the Yolo County Tactical Plan last year in the wake of complaints by farmers that regulatory obstacles were preventing expansion of their operations.

County supervisors this week approved an operating agreement between Yolo and Solano counties, as well as the Solano Community College Small Business Development Center, to create and fund the position, with each county ponying up $27,000 and the college accessing state and federal funds to augment the combined $54,000.

The county anticipates the presence of a farmbudsman could lead to a 20 percent increase in approvals of agriculture-related projects, 500 new ag-related jobs and five new processors in each county by 2015.

However, Supervisor Matt Rexroad of Woodland questioned those numbers, saying Tuesday, “I don’t think those numbers are realistic by any stretch of the imagination.”

“If that’s the case, then we should increase the budget to $100,000 and have 2,000 jobs created in Yolo County,” he said.

Rexroad added the “unrealistic expectations” set up whoever fills the farmbudsman position for failure.

Yolo County Agriculture Commissioner John Young agreed that the notion of five new ag processors in each county was not realistic and that his belief was the goal would be five total between the two counties.

“We’re not wed to those numbers,” he said. “If there are more realistic numbers … we’re open to that.”

But Rexroad remained skeptical, saying, “I’m not convinced of this whole thing … not convinced this will get us anything tangible.”

Some of his colleagues on the board of supervisors also questioned the optimistic target goals but voted in favor of the plan nonetheless.

“We’re (going) in the right direction,” said Supervisor Duane Chamberlain, himself a lifelong farmer.

“What bothers me is that we don’t process much of what we grow in this county,” he said. “We only have one tomato cannery left in this county … I heard six months ago there was a cannery interested (in opening here), but we didn’t have anybody to pursue it.”

In addition to a farmbudsman who would presumably be able to assist in exactly that kind of situation, the new agreement calls on Solano Community College’s small business development center to provide additional services to ag-related businesses not funded by the agreement.

— Reach Anne Ternus-Bellamy at aternus@davisenterprise.net or 530-747-8051. Follow her on Twitter at @ATernusBellamy

Anne Ternus-Bellamy

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Davis Enterprise does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

News

New mosaic mural reflects Peña family history

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
UC Davis biodigester hungers for food scraps, belches out electricity

By Elizabeth Case | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Fire damages Woodland home

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A3

 
Davis Arts Center: See ceramics, join the Big Day of Giving

By Erie Vitiello | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Register to vote by May 19

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Birch Lane sells garden plants, veggies

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Team Blend hosts fundraiser for Nicaragua project

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A3

 
Sign up for enviro organizations during Earth Week

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Davis businesswoman presides over conference

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Bible fun featured at Parents’ Night Out

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

UCD to host premiere of autism documentary

By Cory Golden | From Page: A4

 
400 bikes go up for bids at UCD auction

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Fire crews gather for joint training

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
UFC hears from two local historians

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Church hosts discussion of mental health needs, services

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Sunder hosts campaign event for kids

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Fundraiser benefits Oakley campaign

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Odd Fellows host culinary benefit for nonprofit

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
UC Davis conference showcases undergraduate research

By Julia Ann Easley | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Train to become a weather spotter

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
Fly Fishers talk to focus on healthy streams, rivers

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Learn survival skills at Cache Creek Preserve

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
Veterans, internees may receive overdue diplomas

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

UCD professor to talk about new book

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
Slow Food tour showcases area’s young farmers

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A10

.

Forum

Will anyone notice?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
My votes reflect city values

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

I support Sunder for board

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
A plea on the Bard’s birthday

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

Sharing fire services has been a success

By Our View | From Page: A6

 
Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

.

Sports

Seniors send Blue Devil girls past Broncos in a lacrosse rout

By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Davis gets to Grant ace and rolls in DVC crucial

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Walchli is under par in another Devil victory

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
DHS/Franklin I goes to the Blue Devil softballers

By Chris Saur | From Page: B1 | Gallery

DHS thunders back to win an epic DVC volleyball match

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
 
Sharks go up 3-0 with OT win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

Baseball roundup: Rangers rally to beat A’s in the ninth

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
.

Features

Field to fork: El Macero’s chef offers spring tastes

By Dan Kennedy | From Page: A8 | Gallery

 
.

Arts

Biscuits ‘n Honey will play at winery

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
 
Five Three Oh! featured at April Performers’ Circle

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9 | Gallery

Celebrate spring at I-House on Sunday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
Music, wine flow at Fourth Friday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

Catharine ‘Kay’ Lathrop

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Comics: Wednesday, April 23, 2014

By Creator | From Page: B6