Comer takes a question at Hickman County event
(Clinton, KY. August 1, 2012) - James Comer, the new Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture spoke to a non-partisan gathering of 51 people about the need for saving farms, farmers, and rural small towns. At 10:30 a.m., in the First United Methodist Church’s Young Center, Comer delivered a message of having hope for Kentucky agriculture’s future.
“I believe in the worth of our farmers and their families delivering each year produce and crops for market.” Comer stressed. “Even in a major natural disaster as this 2012 drought, we in Kentucky will fight to continue our tradition of farming.”
Comer’s audience reflected just how far afield the dynamics of agri-business has grown. Several farmers who each year farm over 10,000 acres were present. Hickman County’s two bank presidents and their key staff were in the room with the superintendent and assistant superintendent of Hickman County School System.
To complete the circle of economic and political power gathered to hear Commissioner Comer were the County Jailer, County Clerk, County Sheriff, Circuit Clerk, Clinton’s Mayor and the new City Administrator.
Comer spoke of his experiences of learning farming firsthand in Monroe County. It was on his family farm that he gained the insight and balance of working the land as well as living in rural Kentucky.
Standing before the room of agri-business interests, Comer explained his philosophy of modern farming, “This is a great time to be in farming. Agriculture will be how we save rural Kentucky. New and traditional crops will enable us to bring more economic development to small town and rural Kentucky.”
Stopping to make a point with his hand, Comer leaned into the personal space of those nearest to him, he continued, “We must rethink how we define economic development. It is no longer just related to urban areas. With bio-mass, new crops, better use of our land and water resources, we can jump start Kentucky’s economy.”
With just a hint of slipping into a campaign mode, he told a receptive audience, “I have a PASSION for agriculture. I mean to make sure that in my administration, that we are, in the Kentucky Department for Agriculture, OPEN FOR BUSINESS!!!”