Introduced Version



    A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION honoring USDA Rural Development's Rural Utilities Services on the occasion of its 75th anniversary.

Pearson, Grubb, Michael, McClain, Friend, Lehe

     , read first time and referred to Committee on


Second Regular Session 116th General Assembly (2010)


    A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION honoring USDA Rural Development's Rural Utilities Services on the occasion of its 75th anniversary.

    Whereas, seventy-five years ago, much of rural America existed in a world of candle and lantern light after the sun went down. Long after most urban citizens had electric lights and power, the nation's rural quality of life and productivity were severely hampered by the lack of widely available electricity; and

    Whereas, only about 10 percent of America's farms had electricity in the early 1930s and progress at expanding service was very slow; and
    Whereas, the country was also in the midst of a terrible economic depression that caused millions to lose their jobs. Large swathes of the nation were also suffering from a severe drought and wind storms that combined to create the "dust bowl" conditions that drove tens of thousands of farmers from their land; and

    Whereas, in 1935, Congress responded with two crucial pieces of legislation that forever changed the face of rural America, creating the Rural Electrification Administration (REA) and Resettlement Administration. Both were among

the predecessor agencies of today's USDA Rural Development; and

    Whereas, by 1939 the REA had helped to establish 417 rural electric cooperatives, which served 288,000 households. The actions of the REA encouraged private utilities to electrify the countryside as well. By 1939 rural households with electricity had risen to 25 percent; and

    Whereas, the REA, working in partnership with thousands of local utility cooperatives, brought electric power to almost every corner of the nation. Rural electrification happened much quicker than many dreamed possible at the time. The effort was one of the federal government's greatest success stories of the 20th century. In 1949, REA added a rural telephone program that had a similar impact on bringing telephone service to rural areas; and

    Whereas, REA and FmHA merged with several other USDA programs - including the Agricultural Cooperative Service - to create USDA Rural Development in 1994; and

    Whereas, the 75th anniversary of the creation of REA and the Resettlement Administration - which launched America's quest for rural electrification, homeownership and economic security - is celebrated this year; and

    Whereas, USDA Rural Development's mission is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for rural residents. Rural Development fosters growth in homeownership, finances business development and supports the creation of critical community and technology infrastructure which residents of Indiana are offered these exceptional opportunities; therefore,

Be it resolved by the House of Representatives

of the General Assembly of the State of Indiana,

the Senate concurring:

    SECTION 1. That the Indiana General Assembly observes and recognizes 2010 as the 75th year of USDA Rural Development Rural Utilities Services , which have afforded numerous residents of rural Indiana the opportunity of modern electrical services.

    SECTION 2. That the Principal Clerk of the Indiana General Assembly is hereby directed to transmit a copy of this Resolution to Philip Lehmkuhler, Indiana State Director, USDA Rural Development.