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Column: With festival, a celebration of the value of Virginia Beach agriculture

Ed. note — This column ran in print shortly before the 34th annual Pungo Strawberry Festival. BY DAVID TRIMMER VIRGINIA BEACH — It is a great time of year as we approach Memorial Day. Our daylight grows by the day, the agriculture… Continue Reading

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Virginia Beach farming industry saw overall growth, some changes in past year; budget anticipates restored agricultural reserve program dollars

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE COURTHOUSE – Agriculture in Virginia Beach had an estimated $124.6 million economic impact in 2016, an increase of $3.8 million or 3.1 percent from the previous year, according to the local cooperative extension office. The estimate from… Continue Reading

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Gooden, commonwealth’s ag secretary, meets with farmers in Virginia Beach

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE PUNGO – Dr. Basil Gooden, the state agriculture and forestry secretary, visited Virginia Beach to meet with the city agriculture staff and state extension representatives and tour local farms in the southern end of the city. The… Continue Reading

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Excellence in Agriculture recognition for Morris family, master gardeners, The Independent News; David Salmons earns Clean Water Farm Award

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE OCEANFRONT – Nelson Eddy Morris thanked God for allowing his family to be “stewards of His creation” during the 2016 Excellence in Agriculture banquet on Thursday, March 16, at the Virginia Beach Convention Center. Morris, his… Continue Reading

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For Morris family, recognized for contributions to farming, a tradition with deep roots in Virginia Beach

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE PLEASANT RIDGE — On a recent day, Scott Morris kept two appointments, worked in his fields, then rushed off to see his 10-year-old daughter, Jenna, win an award at school. It’s that hard work, dedication to farming… Continue Reading

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Agriculture: With advisory committee support, Henley to explore reserve program approach in transition area — and farming research

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE COURTHOUSE – Virginia Beach may consider whether the agricultural reserve program, which preserves farmland by purchasing development rights, can be used to address drainage issues in the transition area between the city’s suburban north and rural south. … Continue Reading

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Vaughan joins Virginia Beach agriculture advisory commission; Cullipher will remain in non-voting role

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS COURTHOUSE – Mike Cullipher will no longer serve as a voting member and the chairperson of the city’s agricultural advisory commission due to the recent end of his appointed term, but the commission and city leaders don’t… Continue Reading

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Agriculture: Virginia Beach to seek greater coordination on farming equipment, utility wire issues

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS VIRGINIA BEACH – City Agriculture Director David Trimmer said his department has reached out to local power officials to improve points of contact between the farming community and utilities when it comes to low-hanging wires. The height… Continue Reading

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Virginia Beach implements cap on agricultural land valuation

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS COURTHOUSE – Virginia Beach will impose a ceiling upon land use tax values for agricultural land of either $1,800 per acre or a commodity-determined value, if it is lower than that sum. The value that determines taxes… Continue Reading

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A change for agriculture department amid budget proposal; commission may discuss it Monday

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE COURTHOUSE — The details of the proposed city spending plan have been reported over the past weeks, and officials have touted a key headline after last year’s contentious process. “No tax hike — none,” said Catheryn Whitesell, director… Continue Reading