U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says Kentucky, West Virginia, Tennessee and Louisiana are being included in a federal program intended to help persistently poor rural communities. The secretary made the announcement on Friday (January 17) at the Pine Mountain State Resort Park.
Vilsack says the so-called StrikeForce initiative will enable 73 Kentucky counties to take advantage of USDA programs involving conservation, food assistance and home and business loans.
“We created StrikeForce for the expressed purpose of saying to our state folks…break the silos down within the state, work collaboratively with local leadership, and figure out from local leadership precisely what their priorities are. Focus on regional efforts and try to invest these resources that we have.” –Tom Vilsack
Vilsack says USDA programs have already invested more than four-billion dollars in nearly 16-hundred projects in Kentucky since he’s headed the Agriculture Department.