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Published: Wednesday, 12/13/2006

Farmer gains seat on Fulton soil, water conservation board

Mike Holland, a farmer in Fulton and Lenawee counties, was elected to the Fulton Soil and Water Conservation District board of supervisors last Thursday and will start his three-year term next month, when the district's operating budget will be an immediate concern.

Mr. Holland received 85 votes compared to 78 votes cast for his opponent, incumbent Rod Miller, a retired AT&T communication technician who is an appraiser with Westfall Realty Inc. in West Unity and a crop insurance adjustor with Wells Fargo.

Mr. Holland, 47, who lives in Amboy Township by the Royalton Township line and raises corn, soybeans, and wheat, said the expectation of less funds for the conservation district from the Fulton County commissioners next year likely will be his first big challenge.

The commissioners allocated $227,000 for the conservation district in both 2003 and 2004 but reduced its county funding to $172,000 last year and $175,000 this year. County administrator Vond Hall is to meet with conservation district leaders tomorrow for further discussions.

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