Farm Bureau Banquet Held

By Betsy Finklea
The Dillon County Farm Bureau held their annual meeting recently.
After a call to order by President Keith Allen, the pledge of allegiance by Karen Allen, and an invocation by Joseph Gleason, guests enjoyed dinner while being entertained by the Pee Dee Blue Grass Band.
After dinner, Keith Allen welcomed all in attendance and recognized guests which included state and local officials, Farm Bureau officials, and others.
Last year’s meeting minutes were read by A.V. “Vic” Bethea, III, and then were approved by the group. Tommy Stephens gave the treasurer’s report.
Keith Allen gave the president’s report. His topic was “what are you getting for your membership.” He challenged everyone to bring on at least one new member and said that they should all be advocates for Farm Bureau in their daily lives.
Cullen Bryant gave the nominations committee report. The 2012-2013 officers of the Dillon County Farm Bureau are: President-Keith Allen, Vice-President-Cullen Bryant, Executive Secretary-A.V. “Vic’ Bethea, III, Treasurer-Tommy Stephens, State Director-Cullen Bryant, and Alternate State Director-A.V. “Vic” Bethea, III.
The 2013 Executive Committee includes Keith Allen, Cullen Bryant, Vic Bethea, Tommy Stephens, Joseph Gleason, and Danny Arnette.
The directors are Danny Arnette, Timmy Arnette, Carroll Allen, Gerald Arnette, Fitzhugh Bethea, Daniel Coleman, Randy Berry, Lavern Brigman, Tre Coleman, Phillip Price, Curt McSwain, Harold Gasque, Bruce (Sonny) Price, Jr., Daniel Stephens, and Joseph Gleason
The 2013 County Committee members are: Woman’s Committee Chairman-Jean K. Sox, Legislative and Public Affairs Chairman-Cullen Bryant, and Young Farmer Committee Chairman-Blake Allen.
A.V. “Vic” Bethea, III gave the report of the resolutions committee. Re-worded and new resolutions included:
Reworded: “We recommend that all U.S. Congressional districts be redrawn in a way that is fair and equitable to all constituents in each district, using county lines when possible.”
New: “We recommend that South Carolina Farm Bureau work with other groups (soybeans and cotton, etc.) to establish realistic RMA (Risk Management Agency) and FSA (Farm Service Agency) final planting date.”
New: “We recommend Clemson have no less than one agent per two counties.”
New: “We recommend that South Carolina Farm Bureau work with other groups (soybeans and cotton, etc.) to establish realistic RMA (Risk Management Agency) and FSA (Farm Service Agency) final planting date.”
Reworded: “We encourage and support a very active FFA, Ag, and 4-H program in each high school in Dillon County.”
Cullen Bryant introduced the guest speaker, Senator Kent Williams.
Senator Williams, a former Clemson Extension agent, spoke about the state’s rich agricultural tradition and the bright future of agribusiness.
Williams said farming and forestry together is one of the major economic engines in the state surpassing manufacturing and tourism as the leading industries in the state. He said modern agribusiness provides for nearly 200,000 jobs in South Carolina and generates $7.5 billion annually in labor income.
Williams said the General Assembly put their money where their mouth is this year and made a commitment to agribusiness.
Williams said we need to get back to our roots. He sees agribusiness as the place to build a new economy and create jobs.
“I’m excited about the future of agribusiness in South Carolina,” said Williams. “I believe we’ve just scratched the surface.”
“We need to give rebirth to the agriculture industry in this state,” said Williams. “We’ve gotten way from our roots, and we must come back home.”
After Senator Williams’ remarks, Keith Allen adjourned the meeting. (adv.)

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