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Rural Wrap-Up: Five things you missed last week


1. Federal Reserve unleashed most aggressive hike since 1994


The Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rates three-quarters of a percentage point, marking the most aggressive hike since 1994. It is an effort to bring down inflation rates, which have been impacting consumers and farmers everywhere.

The chairman of the group acknowledged this is an unusually large increase, and he does not expect moves of this size to be common in the future.

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2. U.S. economy shrank 0.9 percent last quarter, but the White House does not call it a recession


The U.S. economy shrank from April through June for a second consecutive quarter, further raising fears that a recession may be creeping soon.

The Commerce Department’s decline in the gross domestic product follows a 1.6 percent drop from January through March. Consecutive dropping quarters signal a recession, according to AP News.

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3. Biden Administration announced $401 million for high-speed internet access in rural America


AP Photo/Bryan Woolston

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack announced major spending for high-speed internet in rural America.

The $400 million comes from the Reconnect program, and USDA says it will bring access to 31,000 rural Americans in nearly a dozen states. It is part of a larger $65 billion spending plan in the infrastructure law to bridge the digital divide.

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4. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith backs the Rural Content Resolution

Photo via Official Twitter

Photo via Official Twitter

A bipartisan resolution has passed the Senate that would guarantee a spot for rural television programming for years to come, and it is something that RFD-TV founder, Patrick Gottsch has been fighting for, for years.

Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith says it is incredibly important that people are educated on what rural America is and brings to the rest of the nation. “So much food is wasted in this country and you think that countries will fight oil over oil, you let them get hungry. So, the messaging is very, very important to me that we always have that avenue that we can get messaging out to general America about their food, the safety of their food, we just take that for granted,” said Hyde-Smith.

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5. Ongoing drought in Texas caused backlogs in sale barns


Livestock producers in the Lone Star state are being hit hard by the ongoing drought and it is trickling down to sale barns. One producer says it took 21 hours to sort cattle at the Decatur Sale Barn.

The first three sales at the Emory Livestock Auction near Dallas this month brought in nearly double the number of the head they saw last year. Another producer says some cattle were not able to handle the heat, and sometimes hard decisions have to be made.

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