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Chastain Provides Testimony in Washington, D.C., on Behalf of Electric Co-ops Nationwide

At the request of NRECA, Georgia EMC President/CEO Dennis Chastain recently testified before the House Agriculture Committee’s Subcommittee on Commodity Exchanges, Energy and Credit.

The subcommittee held the hearing to review rural development and energy programs within the 2014 Farm Bill. In his testimony, Chastain highlighted the value of the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) program and other programs offered by USDA Rural Development, which provides essential assistance to rural America.

The 2014 Farm Bill reauthorizes and/or amends rural development loan and grant programs and authorizes several new provisions, including rural infrastructure, economic development, and broadband and telecommunications development.

“The Farm Bill is essential for electric cooperatives, for Georgia, and for the nation,” Chastain told the House panel. “Co-ops have been supporting rural America for almost 80 years, and in many ways that job is more important now than it ever has been.”

Chastain went on to say that rural areas still grow most of the food, generate most of the power and manufacture most of the goods the country consumes. “When rural areas suffer, electric cooperatives suffer and, more importantly, the country as a whole suffers,” he noted.

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