Identity Graphics to host business mixer Thursday | CraigDailyPress.com

Identity Graphics to host business mixer Thursday

Craig Press staff report

CRAIG — A local business is expanding, and to mark the occasion, a business after-hours mixer is being hosted by Identity Graphics.

The business is creating a new department that will be headed by Brian Mackenzie, director of integrated marketing solutions, to provide new digital media marketing services.

Craig Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors will help Identity Graphics celebrate the launch with a ribbon cutting as it grows to become a full-service marketing agency.

The event will include food, door prizes, networking, and learning opportunities.

The mixer is set for 5 to 7 p.m., with the ribbon cutting at 5:30 p.m., at Identity Graphics, 455 Yampa Ave.

Economic Development Partnership board to meet Jan. 23

The Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership Board of Directors will host its regular board meeting at 4 p.m. Wednesday,  Jan. 23, at Colorado Northwestern Community College, 2801 West Ninth St. Meetings are open to the public.

The CMEDP 2018 Annual Report was released Tuesday.

For more information about the meeting and report, call 970-620-4370 or email director@cmedp.com.

Moffat County Local Marketing District provides guidelines for event funding

The Moffat County Local Marketing District accepts requests for event funding twice per year. All funding requests are due with applications and supporting documents no later than noon March 31 and Oct. 31.

All other requests for funding are to use the Colorado Common Grant Application, along with proper supporting documentation, and should to be emailed to moffatlmdsecretary@gmail.com no later than noon one week before the regularly scheduled meeting.

All grant applications, as well as meeting dates, times, and locations, are available at
colorado.gov/pacific/moffatcounty/moffat-county-local-marketing-district-2.

To be placed on the LMD agenda, contact Board Chair Luke Tucker no later than noon one week before the scheduled meeting. For more information, email Tucker at luke@mountainairspray.com.

Incentives offered to encourage agricultural intern opportunities

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The Colorado Department of Agriculture is introducing the new Agricultural Workforce Development Program, which provides incentives to agricultural businesses, including farms and ranches, to hire interns. Qualified businesses may be reimbursed up to 50 percent of the actual cost of hiring an intern, not to exceed $5,000 per internship.

"Investing in the future is integral to continued progress in agriculture," said Tom Lipetzky, CDA Markets Division director. "With this cost-share incentive, we hope agricultural businesses see this as an opportunity to help build a talent pipeline and pathway for educating our next generation of agricultural leaders."

The program is the result of legislation introduced during the 2018 Colorado General Assembly by the Young and Beginning Farmers Interim Study Committee. It is aimed at providing hands-on educational opportunities for individuals aspiring to careers in agriculture.

About $40,000 is available for the first round of internships through June 30. Information about additional funding will be provided at a later date. Qualified internships must include at least 130 hours of work experience and provide a focused learning opportunity for interns. The department is now accepting applications from businesses interested in participating in the program. The application and additional information are available at colorado.gov/agmain.

For more information, call Glenda Mostek at 303-869-9173.

USDA to reopen some Farm Service Agency offices during shutdown

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced that many Farm Service Agency offices will reopen temporarily in the coming days to perform certain limited services for farmers and ranchers.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has recalled about 2,500 FSA employees to open offices Friday, Jan. 18, and Tuesday, Jan, 22, during normal business hours. The offices will be closed for the federal Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday on Monday, Jan. 21.

In almost half of FSA locations, FSA staff will be available to assist agricultural producers with existing farm loans and ensure the agency provides 1099 tax documents to borrowers by the Internal Revenue Service's deadline.

The office nearest to Craig that will reopen is in Grand Junction.

"Until Congress sends President Trump an appropriations bill in the form that he will sign, we are doing our best to minimize the impact of the partial federal funding lapse on America's agricultural producers," Perdue said.  "We are bringing back part of our FSA team to help producers with existing farm loans.  Meanwhile, we continue to examine our legal authorities to ensure we are providing services to our customers to the greatest extent possible during the shutdown."

Staff members will be available at certain FSA offices to help producers with specific services, including:

• Processing payments made on or before December 31, 2018.

• Continuing expiring financing statements.

• Opening mail to identify priority items.

Additionally, as an intermittent incidental duty, staff may release proceeds from the sale of loan security by signing checks jointly payable to FSA that are brought to the county office by producers.

Information about the locations of FSA offices to be open during this window will be posted on the USDA website.

While staff are available in person during the window, most available services can be handled by telephone. Additionally, farmers who have loan deadlines during the lapse in funding do not need to make payments until the government shutdown ends.