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Supporting agriculture at our fairs

The Lawrence County Fair recently kicked off the fair season within the 87th Ohio House District, and the other county fairs will be held throughout the remainder of July and into the first half of August.

This is certainly a great time for our communities to come together and support one another.

I plan to actively meet with constituents at the fairs, as well as support the livestock sales that are held.

For as long as I can remember, I have worked at the county fair. It was all hands on deck when I was kid, and my dad’s hauling business had the contract to pick up trash at the county fair.

He continued to do it up until he sold his business earlier this year, but I was always happy to head to the fair with him.

People always say that their own county fair has the hottest temperatures, and I agree with every one of them. But regardless of the weather, I encourage you to get out and see the local county fair and all of the 4-H projects that are presented there.

Our youth work hard at training their animals and setting up their displays. You can learn a lot from what they have to teach us about agriculture and a host of other interesting subjects.

In recognition of the importance of agriculture in our state, the Ohio House restored funding to the Ohio State University Extension Service, Ohio Agricultural Research and Developmental Center, and Soil and Water Districts.

These organizations help commercialize agricultural products and improve economic return on Ohio’s agriculture.

This affects our lives not only economically, but also with medical advances, energy development and other beneficial opportunities.

As an example of the effects, there were only a few fish farms in Ohio years ago, and now there are hundreds.

When I was elected to the Ohio House for this General Assembly, I requested to be on the House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee. This committee has been very active, already having passed 14 bills out of committee.

The particular bills we have reviewed have been about water, natural gas, coal, timber, aggregates, agriculture reform and resolutions that urge the EPA not to put our energy future, including coal, at risk.

Agriculture and natural resources—as well as the responsible use and promotion of them—provide sources for food and energy that are essential to Ohio’s economic well-being.

I’m glad that the many fairs we have throughout Ohio during the summer offer us an opportunity to display more information about them and learn about something that will continue to be beneficial in our future.

John Carey serves in Ohio’s 87th District of the House of Representatives, which includes eastern Lawrence County. He can be reached at (614) 466-1366, by writing to: Ohio House of Representatives, 77 S. High St., Columbus, OH 43215, or via e-mail at District87@ohr.state.oh.us.