Governor Signs Proclamation for Cooperative Month

Oct 04, 2022


Gov. Ricketts signing coop month proclamation
LINCOLN, NE–A proclamation recognizing October as Cooperative Month will be signed by Governor Pete Ricketts on October 3, 2022. This coincides with the annual recognition of October as National Cooperative Month by the United States Department of Agriculture. This year's national theme is "Co-ops Build Economic Power."

The proclamation to be signed by the Governor recognizes Nebraska's farmer-owned cooperatives and rural electric and telephone cooperatives for the important role that they play in Nebraska's economy.

In 2021, rural agricultural cooperatives served the needs of nearly 60,000 farmers and ranch owners. With an annual payroll of over $388 billion, cooperatives directly employ 5,140 Nebraskans in 401 communities across the state.

Last year, Nebraska's agricultural cooperatives made cash patronage and equity redemption payments totaling over $104 million to their members and reinvested over $182 million in property, plant, and equipment to serve members' needs. This economic activity arose from total statewide revenues of approximately $9.4 billion.

Nebraska's rural electric cooperatives serve over 7,000 rural farmers and ranchers with - a combined service territory of over 12,000 square miles. Rural telephone cooperatives in Nebraska serve over 9,000 telephone, television and broadband users in Nebraska.

The economic impact of cooperatives benefit all Nebraskans. Nebraska communities were supported by over $20 million of property tax paid by agricultural cooperatives. Nebraska's farmer-owned cooperatives, governed by their farmer owners, contributed $1.8 million to local fire departments, local school and youth organizations, local and statewide FFA and 4-H chapters, and provided numerous scholarships to help Nebraska students continue their education.

Rocky Weber, President and General Counsel to the Nebraska Cooperative Council, stated: "Co-op Month gives Nebraskans the opportunity to learn about the important role Nebraska's agricultural cooperative system plays in the vitality of our state's economy. Nebraska's farmer-owned cooperatives, in addition to providing direct economic benefits to their farmer members, offer excellent employment opportunities throughout rural Nebraska. Farmers support their communities by doing business through their cooperatives, demonstrating the values and principles that make cooperatives a unique business structure. Governor Ricketts’ proclamation of October 2022 as Cooperative Month is a welcome acknowledgment of how Co-ops Build Economic Power in Nebraska.”

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