Kimball and Banner counties are the latest counties in Nebraska to be designated "Livestock Friendly."
With the addition of Kimball and Banner, there are now 20 counties so designated through the program, administered by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture. The others counties are: Adams, Box Butte, Cuming, Dawes, Deuel, Gage, Garden, Grant, Hitchcock, Jefferson, Keith, Lincoln, Morrill, Saline, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, Wayne and Webster.
"In receiving this designation, Kimball and Banner Counties have shown they are committed to supporting the counties' livestock industry and related economic development," says Gov. Heineman. "Being part of the Livestock Friendly program is a way to recognize the tremendous impact the livestock industry has on Main Streets and the local economy. It provides jobs for those working with animals and a marketplace for grain and hay producers, while also adding value to those products. With this designation, Kimball and Banner Counties have demonstrated they are open to agribusiness and the benefits that come from responsible livestock production."
Heineman presented the Livestock Friendly certificates to Kimball County commissioners Larry Brower, Larry Engstrom and David Bashaw, and to Banner County Commissioners Bob Gifford, Bob Post and John-Robert Faden.
The counties will receive road signs bearing the program logo to display along highways.
Greg Ibach, Nebraska Department of Agriculture director, says the official designation makes a positive statement about Kimball and Banner counties.
"It was clear from the submitted materials that Kimball and Banner county officials have given some purposeful thought to supporting the livestock industry," Ibach says.
To apply for a livestock friendly county designation, the county board must hold a public hearing and pass a resolution to apply. A completed application is then submitted to Nebraska Department of Agriculture for review.
Local producers or community groups can encourage their county board to submit a livestock friendly county application.
Additional information on the Livestock Friendly County program is available by contacting NDA toll free at 800-422-6692, or by visiting the NDA website at www.agr.ne.gov and clicking the Livestock Friendly County link.