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Oregon State University’s extension service, like all aspects of state government, is facing budget cuts and looking at ways to reduce expenses, including layoffs. I want efficient government as much as the next person, but cutting back a free service on which so many farmers, ranchers, growers, 4-H kids and ordinary backyard gardeners rely would be a mistake. The extension service promotes sustainability across many dimensions: conserving water, building soil health, promoting integrated pest management and reducing use of pesticides,  supporting the local food movement, and distributing research-based, scientifically proven information about how to grow crops and gardens and raise animals in ways that are good for the planet. AND IT’S ALL FREE!

The university (and state government generally) should be focused on streamlining its layers of management and bloated bureaucracy, not reducing services rendered directly to taxpayers.

This article on bendbulletin.com addresses the impact here in the High Desert.

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