Saturday, July 31, 2021


Educators' unions call for efforts to ensure in-person learning keeps students, teachers, families, and staff safe; and an update on hate crimes by state.


Congress passes Capitol security funding; House Freedom Caucus members want Cheney, Kinzinger out of GOP conference; Schumer closes a deal to advance $3.5 trillion reconciliation package; and a new report says investor-owned utilities try to block rooftop solar.

Governor Supports Helping KY Farmers Get Produce to Food Banks


Wednesday, January 15, 2020   

FRANKFORT, Ky. - Gov. Andy Beshear and groups that work to end hunger rally today in Frankfort, highlighting the fact that one in seven Kentuckians is considered "food insecure."

Scottie Lee is a third-generation Western Kentucky farmer who participates in the "Farms to Food Banks" program, run by the group Feeding Kentucky. He's paid to haul his leftover fruits and vegetables to regional food banks.

Since the program began in 2011, more than 21 million pounds of local produce has been distributed to Commonwealth residents. Lee says its a win-win solution for reducing hunger.

"You know, the average person might not realize that this produce that we're salvaging and putting in this Farms to Food Banks program, this is probably some of the most nutrient-dense food that those people that are in need are going to be able to get hold of," says Lee.

Farms to Food Banks is funded by a state budget appropriation of a $500,000 annually, private donors - such as Farm Credit Mid-America and the Novak Family Foundation - and by Kentuckians who choose to donate a portion of their state tax refund to the program.

Lee is one of 336 farmers who participated last year. He says the extra cash he makes from packaging and delivering leftover or slightly blemished produce is funneled back into the farm's operation.

"And it adds to our farm's efficiency, by being able to have a market for that extra that we might have," says Lee. "That all goes into the pot that helps us pay expenses and labor."

Sarah Vaughn, a program coordinator Feeding Kentucky, says state food banks are struggling to keep pace with the demand. But she points out the issue isn't always on the public radar.

"We say a lot of times that food insecurity is a hidden problem, because a lot of the people that are hungry, they're not homeless. And so, you don't see 'em," says Vaughn. "They're not going to be sitting out on the street corner or anything like that, because they have housing, but they just have to make tough decisions."

According to a 2019 "Map the Meal Gap" report, 187,000 children in the Commonwealth struggle with hunger.

Disclosure: Feeding Kentucky contributes to our fund for reporting on Hunger/Food/Nutrition, Poverty Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

get more stories like this via email
In addition to roof repairs and other home improvements to lower utility bills, a Michigan League for Public Policy report recommends expanding utility-shutoff protections to include households with young children. (Adobe Stock)


LANSING, Mich. - High utility costs are a major burden for Michigan's low-income residents, and a new study says they have an impact on their health…


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A new report shows an effort by investor-owned utilities in the Sunshine State to block the growth of rooftop solar. The …

Health and Wellness

By Troy Pierson / Broadcast version by Mary Schuermann reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Collaboration. As marijuana becomes more …

Across the United States, 46 states have laws allowing for harsher punishment for crimes based on bias. (Ludk/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

SALT LAKE CITY - With rising numbers of people targeted in hate crimes and related violence, a new report analyzes the hate-crime laws in each state…

Social Issues

BOSTON - Educators' unions are calling on the state to support their efforts to ensure in-person learning in the fall keeps students, teachers…

According to AARP Connecticut, 47% of family caregivers have had at least one financial setback, such as having less money for retirement or savings, or cutting back on their own healthcare spending. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

HARTFORD, Conn. - In Connecticut, more than 460,000 people care for close friends or family members who can't manage on their own - and their …

Social Issues

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Millions of Americans soon could find eviction notices on their front doors, but New Mexico renters will not be among them - as …

Health and Wellness

CONCORD, N.H. - New Hampshire advocates for affordable healthcare access want Congress to lower prescription costs by allowing Medicare to negotiate …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021