Democratic candidate for Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture Bob Farmer is proposing four new regional offices to be placed throughout the state in order to provide better resources to residents and bring services closer to local farmers.
“It just makes sense to have regional offices that specialize in those commodities in those regions and really be a voice to those local areas..” says Farmer campaign manager Matt Wyatt. “It’s really top down right now. You have to go to Frankfort. And we want to bring Frankfort out to the people.”
Locations for the offices will be determined at a later date, but Wyatt says the idea will give state assistance programs a local perspective and a more convenient location.
The Farmer campaign believes state farmers will be afforded a wide range of services targeted to their particular area and business with special emphasis on regulatory, pesticide and marketing expertise.
Asked about the cost of the new locations to taxpayers, Wyatt says Farmer hopes it will be “revenue neutral” but the new offices will be staffed by current department employees and will utilize existing state and county office space.
“Cost will be put to an absolute minimum,” he says. “We’re going to work with county officials much like the innovation centers that have been setup around the state where the state works with local officials to setup the cheapest office space possible.”
Wyatt says Farmer will also achieve cost savings once he takes office by calling for an independent audit in the department in order to cut wasteful spending.
Farmer is running against state Rep. James Comer, R-Tompkinsville, in the fall election.