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United States Secretary of Agriculture Scheduled to Visit the Buckeye State

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United States Secretary of Agriculture Scheduled to Visit the Buckeye State

As Vice-Chairman of the House Committee on Agriculture and a 13-year member of that important congressional panel, I understand just how critical the agriculture industry is to the economy in Ohio and across the nation. With that in mind, each year I host a unique event right here in the Eighth Congressional District to connect Buckeye State farmers with local, state, and national agriculture experts. It's called Farm Forum, and for more than a decade, it has been attended by thousands of men and women seeking an opportunity to meet face-to-face with some of the industry's most important and effective leaders.

The 2004 Farm Forum is right around the corner, and I am pleased to announce that this year's event will include a key member of the Bush Administration and of the agriculture community: United States Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman. Secretary Veneman has agreed to travel to the Eighth District and serve as Farm Forum's keynote speaker.

When I began hosting Farm Forum over a decade ago, I never expected it to be as great a success as it has been. But without fail, with each passing year, it has drawn increasingly larger crowds and more dynamic, informative speakers. With Secretary Veneman on board this year, I expect we'll continue that in 2004. The fact that a high-profile Bush Administration official is traveling to Farm Forum demonstrates how important this event is to Ohio and how important Ohio is to our nation's farm economy. Without a doubt, I expect a spirited dialogue between Ohio farmers, Secretary Veneman, and others involved in shaping farm policy.

2004 Farm Forum is slated for Saturday March 6th from 7:45am to 2:00pm at Troy Christian Elementary School, 1586 McKaig Avenue in Troy. In addition to Secretary Veneman's address, which will be at 8:30am, a distinguished panel of experts will come to Troy to discuss a wide range of issues at Farm Forum. Among the topics to be covered: the impact of environmental policy on Ohio and American agriculture; and the effect of Mad Cow Disease on the farm industry.

Farm Forum has been important to me and to Ohio for more than a decade. I urge the agriculture community to join us and let their voices be heard once again this year. Farm Forum is a free event for anyone with an interest in farm policy. Lunch will be provided by the Cattlemen's Association for a nominal fee. To RSVP, or for additional information, contact my office toll-free at 1-800-582-1001. I look forward to seeing you on Saturday March 6th at the 2004 Eighth District Farm Forum!

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