2018 February 14

Show only the Charts, Google Maps, Maps, Photos or Videos.

Alfred E. Smith Building
Bennett Hill Preserve
CDTA Bus Stop #449
Climate Change
Danby State Forest
Growing Older
Partridge Run Game Management Area

February 2018
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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

Facebook Launches “Donate” Button For Non-Profits That Also Collects Billing Info For Itself

I've wondered why Facebook is so aggressive at promoting it's donation program. While Facebook does not charge anything for donations to chartiable contributions, they do keep your credit card to make it easier to solicit you later on for ad sales and game add-ons. They are big, so they have good terms with credit card companies, so they get a low rate, so the transaction to cheriable organization doesn't cost them much.

Map: Danby State Forest

Map: Danby State Forest

Danby State Forest (Tompkins #1) encompasses 7,337 acres of public open space in the towns of Danby, Candor and Spencer. It is one of two forests covered in the Rapid Water Unit Management Plan. Its large size and close proximity to the city of Ithaca and the Finger Lakes Region make Danby State Forest a great place to enjoy activities such as hunting, hiking, cross-country skiing, bird watching, picnicking and camping. Danby State Forest is a working State Forest that is sustainably managed to provide recreational services, diverse wildlife habitat, firewood and lumber.

Trump wants to cut back on food stamps for the poor and substitute with packaged food deliveries

Food stamps were originally designed not only to help the food insecure but also farmers. But it does a bad job at both of those things, mainly because food processors and retailers take a big chunk out of the limited food dollars.

I think food stamps should be restructured to incentivize direct farmer-to-consumer purchases, cutting out the middle-man and off-farm processor so farms get to keep more of the profits.

Moreover, food stamps should at least in part be replaced with government-subsidized community-supported agricultural (CSA) memberships, and things like direct to door delivery of fresh milk and farm produce from local farms. Expanding SNAP accessibility at farmers markets also would help, and making SNAP dollars go further at farmers markets then grocery stores. Maybe a $1 in SNAP at a grocery store could be subsidized so it buys $2 in SNAP at a farmer market or a farm stand.

Many low-income people live a long ways from grocery stores. There are many parts of New York State where you have to drive a half hour to get to a grocery store with a full-selection of quality, affordable foods. Many low-income people lack transportation or funds to get to these bigger stores. Many are elderly, disabled, or have young children.

Farmer delivery of SNAP purchased foods is a good idea. Maybe farmers could get together to deliver a wide variety of local foods to the food insecure, like maple syrup, milk, beef, pork, sweet corn, potatoes, apples, peaches, blueberries and many other crops grown in-state.

Maybe it could be combined with returnable milk bottles and boxes, and a compost-service, that would make it a zero waste SNAP program. SNAP recipients would get healthy food delivered each week, and get their food scraps, empty milk bottles, and other green waste brought back to the farm for use as animal feed and composting for fertilizer. This further would reduce costs -- billions are wasted each year in discarded packaging and food waste with the current SNAP program.

For too long in our country, we have been stuck with outdated ideas. Home food delivery of fresh local produce to SNAP recipients, to replace part of the SNAP benefit, is one good idea that I our country should move forward on.

President Donald Trump is a good conversation starter, even if his ideas don't go far enough to jump start our economy and make our public programs more successful.