Farm Bureau ‘plants’ for future infrastructure
PAT KOPECKI/Reprints at wilsoncountynews.com
Texas Farm Bureau District XII Director Russell Boening addresses the Wilson County Farm Bureau members Oct. 17 during the group’s annual convention, joined by county President Tom Ortmann and Farm Bureau Floresville Office Manager Marcia Jones.
FLORESVILLE -- Farm-to-market roads, real property rights, and feral hog damage are among the many issues that today’s farmers and ranchers contend with. For members of the Texas Farm Bureau, state resolutions on these issues originate from the local or county level, and Wilson County is no exception.
During the county’s annual convention held Oct. 17 in the Wilson County Show Barn, Wilson County Farm Bureau members approved resolutions to be forwarded to the state convention for consideration and possible adoption. The county Farm Bureau members:
•“Support legislation requiring all pipelines, transmission lines, and cable lines to pay an annual fee to private landowners for the right to use that property to transport their product.” The group states pipelines and transmission lines are owned by public entities, and legislation is required to make this change.
•“Oppose Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) converting asphalt farm-to-market roads to gravel. We support allowing 37.5 percent of oil and gas revenue tax be added to the highway fund for maintenance of farm-to-market roads. In the event a farm-to-market road is converted to gravel, TxDOT should continue to maintain the road.”
•“Support a state program which would pay landowners the difference in cost between a standard five-wire barbwire fence and a hog wire fence when they are constructing a new boundary-line fence.”
While these resolutions will go to the state level for consideration, State Sen. Judith Zaffirini and Rep. John Kuempel also addressed the group regarding issues being discussed in Austin. See article, above for more.
In other business, the county Farm Bureau continues to grow in membership. According to Agency Manager Mark Langseth, the county had 3,290 members last year. Today, Wilson County Farm Bureau membership is at 3,580, with 3,600 members anticipated by the end of October. At this pace, the group should reach 4,000 in 2014.
Directors reelected to serve another two-year term include Russell Boening, Paul Dylla, James Korzekwa, Ervin Kotzur, Jason Pfeil, Pat Ray, and Tom Ortmann. They join Carl Hoefelmeyer, Bill Hofferichter, Wayne James, Milton Lowak, Jason Peeler, Edmond Pruski, Charles Herber, and Ferdinand Kotzur.
A silent auction benefiting the group’s scholarship fund raised more than $3,100, surpassing last year’s total by more than $500.
Six $500 scholarships were awarded to high school graduates Kelli Koldziej, Mariel McFadden, John Shodrock, John Handowski, Lacee Popham, and Liesel Raabe.