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Lawmakers from across the state will get a look at Owen County farming when the General Assembly’s Joint Interim Committee on Agriculture convenes at Eden Shale Farm.
Ryan Quarles, R-Georgetown, who represents Owen County in the Kentucky House of Representatives, said the committee will listen to presentations and meet with the public June 11, starting at 10 a.m.
“It will be my pleasure to welcome these lawmakers to one of the true jewels of Owen County,” Quarles said.
The speakers will include Dr. Nancy Cox, the dean of the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment and representatives from the Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association, which now operates Eden Shale.
“I’m hoping that the legislators will be able to take a tour of Eden Shale and get to witness all the important work that is going on there,” Quarles said. “It’s important for every lawmaker in Kentucky to see first-hard how important agriculture is to the people in places like Owen County.”
The committee is co-chaired by Tom McKee, D-Cynthiana and Paul Hornback, R-Shelbyville and includes Senate Floor Majority Leader Damon Thayer, R-Georgetown.
Quarles said the event should be a learning experience for the lawmakers and the public.
“It’s good that all the members of this committee can get out and meet the people involved in farming and agriculture in Kentucky,” Quarles said. “I think we can reach people better and find out what the issues Kentucky farmers face every day when we can talk to them directly. Sometimes these discussions have a little more merit when they are not in the halls of Frankfort.”
Although many members of the committee have backgrounds in Kentucky agriculture, Quarles said the lawmakers can always learn from the public.
“A meeting like this gives the public the opportunity to bring new issues to light,” Quarles said. “By meeting with the people involved in agriculture, maybe we can revise legislation concerning any emerging issues that fewer and fewer Americans seem to understand.”
Quarles encourages everyone involved in agriculture to attend the committee meeting and to dress casual.
“It’s going to be held in a tobacco barn so I really hope no one will show up in a suit,” Quarles said.
Under the authority of the General Assembly, the committee addresses matters pertaining to crops, livestock, poultry and their marketing, disease control and warehousing; tobacco; stockyards; agricultural cooperatives and marketing associations; agriculture weights and measures; and veterinarians.
The farm is located at 245 Eden Shale Road in Owenton.