May 4, 2012
According to the Beatrice Daily Sun, the presentation was made during the annual "Day on the Farm" program.
"In receiving this designation, Gage County has made a strong commitment to supporting rural economic development," Sheehy said in a statement. "Being part of the Livestock Friendly program is a way to recognize the tremendous impact the livestock industry has on Main Street 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, Gage County has demonstrated that it is open to agribusiness and the benefits that come from responsible livestock production."
The 14 other Livestock Friendly counties include Adams, Box Butte, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Grant, Hitchcock, Jefferson, Keith, Lincoln, Morrill, Sheridan, Wayne and Webster Counties.
Greg Ibach, director of the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, said the official designation makes a positive statement about Gage County. "Gage County has a relatively large and dispersed population base. This designation shows that a county doesn’t have to choose between people and livestock," he said. "The county board has identified areas where agriculture and livestock can exist, prosper and grow, while still allowing room for people to enjoy country living."
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 the Department of Agriculture for review.