Skip to main content

jasper schneider

World Accessibility in Rural America

Access to the world via internet and mobile phone services is at the fingertips of most Americans, but this is not the reality for residents of many rural communities across the Nation.

In October 2014, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced $190.5 million in grants and loans to make broadband and other advanced communications infrastructure improvements in rural areas.

A Community Rallies to Save its Historic Theater

The Scenic Theater in Lisbon, North Dakota, like many small-town theaters, was struggling with the high cost to convert from a film to digital format. Film had been an industry standard for more than a hundred years, but Hollywood studios will stop printing on actual film by the end of the year.

Established in 1911, the Scenic is the oldest, continually operating theater in the United States. Due to the digital upgrade, theater owners, Al and Betty Michels, were worried that it would be forced to go dark for the first time. To make the transition, all new equipment would have to be purchased and installed, which would cost close to $100,000. With this daunting number, the community rallied to help preserve the historic theater.

North Dakota Food and Agriculture Council Focuses on Local Food Collaboration

A growing consumer appetite for foods grown in their region was the focus of a recent Food and Agricultural Council (FAC) meeting in Valley City, North Dakota.  FAC Chairman, Jasper Schneider, also state director of USDA Rural Development, invited healthy food activists to share the ups and downs of this growing movement.

A North Dakota Community Lessens Arsenic Levels in its Water Supply with USDA Funding Support

After a long, blizzard-filled winter, Earth Day was celebrated April 29 in Lidgerwood, North Dakota.  USDA Rural Development delivered the latest in a number of loans and grants to help offset the cost of a $1.58 million project to provide safe drinking water to the city.  Lidgerwood’s leaders first learned of arsenic in their water supply twenty-three years ago.  After a number of other methods failed to solve the problem, the city eventually joined a regional rural water district.  Rural Development North Dakota State Director, Jasper Schneider said the USDA is proud to partner with the city and other funding sources to make safe and reliable water a reality for its 700 citizens.

USDA Rural Development State Director Tours Southwestern North Dakota to Connect with Community Leaders

USDA Rural Development State Director Jasper Schneider, and staff, recently toured seven rural communities in southwestern North Dakota as part of USDA’s ongoing commitment to rural communities.  Schneider participated in conversations with community leaders to identify ways Rural Development programs can most effectively work to improve the quality of life and increase economic opportunity in the region.

USDA Recovery Act Funds North Dakota Water Project to Benefit Thousands of Residents

The day was hot and windy, but the mood on the banks of the Missouri River was electrifying as North Dakota USDA Rural Development State Director Jasper Schneider joined Congressman Earl Pomeroy, South Central Regional Water District board members, farmers, ranchers, and city folk recently to witness the long-awaited groundbreaking for a new water treatment facility.