KENNEWICK, WA – Representatives from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) were in Kennewick today to discuss new funding opportunities for Farm Labor Housing.

The event, which took place at the Three Rivers Convention Center, featured a roundtable talk with national, regional, and local leaders to talk about programs beneficial to rural communities across the Pacific Northwest as well as reflect on how previous investments have benefitted the region.

Dr. Basil Gooden, who serves as the USDA Rural Development Under Secretary for the Biden-Harris Administration, told KEPR News discussions like this help the Federal Government better understand how they can be of assistance to rural communities and farming regions.

“Sometimes those tools (we have) don’t align with the needs that we see on the ground, so it’s vitally important to work with farmers, producers, and businesses to really help us better understand how we can either make our programs more flexible to meet the needs as they see them on the ground. We’re really trying to be more entrepreneurial,” Dr. Gooden explained.

Dr. Gooden says more than $48 million is being invested into rural development opportunities as well as continued sustainability of agriculture production in Washington and Oregon.



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