February 13, 2016

Farmer’s Market organizers hope to return to downtown roots

Amy Cunningham

After spending the 2010 season off the beaten path, the Gardner Farmer’s Market hopes to move back near its roots this summer.

“We’re hoping to be able to get back downtown this year, that’s our goal,” said Melanie Gieringer a representative of the Market.

For its first run in 2009, the market was located in the parking lot of the Sawyer Building at the corner of Main and North Sycamore Streets.  Last year the group moved over to the TradeNet parking lot on Santa Fe Street– doing so allotted vendors more space, but far less visibility.

“Last year we didn’t have the option to close (Sycamore) Street again…and we had (customers) that wanted more and more variety, so space was one of our reasons for moving,” Gieringer explained. “When we got out (to Santa Fe Street) we had more space and we had more variety and more vendors, but we couldn’t get more people out there for various reasons – road construction and our visibility wasn’t the greatest.”

This year the group would like to move to a location just across Sycamore Street from their original market.

Larry Alsup, owner of the building at 318 East Main has offered to let the Market operate on the grassy vacant lot located just west of his building. The group has applied for a special use permit from the city to make their move official.

Gieringer said if the group is not granted their permit they will most likely be forced to disband the market.

“We really need to be able to get back downtown.  We’re more visible downtown and we’ll get so many more people down there,” she stated.  “We’re an all volunteer group, so we need that visibility.”

She hopes to have the spot secured for an end of June opening weekend.  The Farmer’s Market will operate on Thursday afternoons from 4 to 7 p.m.  Gieringer said the new location would offer customers plenty of space for parking, both at the Sawyer Building and at Alsup’s building.


  1. Speechless says:

    The city should close down Elm street east or west of Main for this. The farmers market should become part of Gardner. Lets think BIG!!!

  2. Think you have your directions wrong since I believe Elm Street would be good but either NORTH OR SOUTH of Main St. God knows those businesses downtown need the foot traffic.

    Some smart young kids should offer a few tables and chairs along with breakfast burritos and hot coffee and maybe some sweet rolls for those who might like to sit a spell and chat after they have done their yummy fresh produce, etc. shopping. I think Saturday mornings would be better for the Farmers Market with the hopes perhaps that people could slow down their pace and stop and smell the flowers for a little while rather than stabbing people in the back with a recall. It would be quite refreshing especially if we could throw in a little good music once in awhile.

    So many possibilities when you have decent people with good moral values involved and something that involves ALL OF THE PEOPLE of the community rather than just the special interests and their worthless politicians out to steal some more dollars from the citizens.

  3. Just when I thought Judith would have a nice post she goes and sticks a political jab in there.

    A weekend market would be more successful and wouldn’t hamper some of the businesses and offices since they would be closed.


    The voters approved the intermodal, the elected officials screwed it up giving any benefits to Edgerton while the intermodal remained in the same spot (failure to stop it from still coming). The voters knew the city got screwed and voted the officials out.

  4. Jerry L Kellogg Sr says:

    The reason given for holding Gardner’s Farmer’s Market on a weekday the past two years has been that many vendors also participate in other markets on the weekends and many local farmers also offer weekend sales on their farm property.

  5. Skeptic–Just who got screwed??? Edgerton residents did not get to vote on the intermodal. We were just raised to a higher form of dictatorship.

  6. Judith, there are some of us that appreciate your postings/info. Maybe we should change our community motto to “the little Bell, California of the Midwest–where the taxpayers are sure to pay the bill”.

  7. Further, I am surprised that there is any agricultural land left to be discussing having a Farmer’s Market. BNSF said that they were going to develop all that “ugly agricultural land”. Is the public not aware that the food we need for survival comes from agricultural land–vegetables, fruits, meats, grains??? Or, is the public too focused on sex education and Hollywood and what’s in it for me???

    Warren Buffet, owner of BNSF, goes on national TV and says to give to charity. Yet, the State of Kansas gave $35,000,000.00 ($35 million dollars) of taxpayers’ monies for this intermodal. Buffet says that his businesses make a profit in the millions and is consulted how to do it. Well, if someone gave me $35 million, I would have a profit. I understand if you visit him in Omaha, Nebraska, he might take you to McDonalds.

  8. Speechless says:

    I did mean North or South. I understand why they have it on the weekday. Lets just make it the BIGGEST farmers markets on a weekday! This could be BIG for Gardner.

    And please leave out all the political BS out of it. There are plenty of other stories for us to make comments about.

  9. Speechless–It is not BS. Where is the agricultural land where the farmers are growing/raising our food???

  10. A little research would help says:

    In response to your concern about the percentage of US land that is agricultural, here are some figures from the Western Watersheds Project http://www.westernwatersheds.org/watmess/watmess_2002/2002html_summer/article6.htm

    Overview of Land Use in the United States-The U.S. has 2.3 billion acres of land. However, 375 million acres are in Alaska and not suitable for agricultural production. The land area of the lower 48 states is approximately 1.9 billion acres.

    To put things in perspective, keep in mind that California is 103 million acres, Montana 94 million acres, Oregon 60 million acres and Maine 20 million acres.

    Developed Land- Despite all the hand wringing over sprawl and urbanization, only 66 million acres are considered developed lands. This amounts to 3 percent of the land area in the U.S., yet this small land base is home to 75 percent of the population. In general, urban lands are nearly useless for biodiversity preservation. Furthermore, urbanized lands, once converted, usually do not shift to another use.

    Rural Residential Land-This category comprises nearly all sprawl and subdivisions along with farmhouses scattered across the country The total acreage for rural residential is 73 million acres. Of this total, 44 million acres are lots of 10 or more acres.

    Developed and rural residential make up 139 million acres, or 6.1 percent of total land area in the U.S. This amount of land is not insignificant until you consider that we planted more than 80 million acres of feeder corn and another 75 million acres of soybeans (95 percent of which are consumed by livestock, not tofu eaters) last year alone. These two crops affect more of the land area of the U.S. than all the urbanization, rural residential, highways, railroads, commercial centers, malls, industrial parks and golf courses combined.

    Cropland- About 349 million acres in the U.S. are planted for crops. This is the equivalent of about four states the size of Montana. Four crops — feeder corn (80 million acres), soybeans (75 million acres), alfalfa hay (61 million acres) and wheat (62 million acres) — make up 80 percent of total crop acreage. All but wheat are primarily used to feed livestock.

    The amount of land used to produce all vegetables in the U.S. is less than 3 million acres.

    Range and Pasture Land- Some 788 million acres, or 41.4 percent of the U. S. excluding Alaska, are grazed by livestock. This is an area the size of 8.3 states the size of Montana. Grazed lands include rangeland, pasture and cropland pasture. More than 309 million acres of federal, state and other public lands are grazed by domestic livestock. Another 140 million acres are forested lands that are grazed.

    Forest Land- Forest lands comprise 747 million acres. Of these lands, some 501 million acres are primarily forest (minus lands used for grazed forest and other special categories).

  11. Granny is right. The government needs to step in and tell land owners who they can and can’t sell their land to.

    Before any farmer sells his land, it needs to be put up to a vote of the people in that county. He needs to disclose who he’s selling it to and if their intended use is anything other than farming it needs to go to a vote.

  12. Well, you could always have the Farmers Market at 11:00 P.M. in the Walmart or Coleman parking lots with all of the truckers able to stop by and make their purchases………think BIG……like in big diesel trucks and BIG pollution……and maybe you can hand over some more funds to Walmart or Coleman for use of their pasrking lots like we have done before with them and other local business owners………the takers are always around wanting to be taken care of by the average citizens because they are special………special interests will take advantage of you if you let them and they sure have been getting the advantages via worthless politicians who work for the jaybirds………and if you get decent people into office, the takers and those who support them are using the ole lie and hate game via a recall………

  13. The business entities who have offered their properties for the Farmers Market, Mertz, Alsup and Sawyer, have all benefited together to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars thru cronyism government. They certainly give little with their offerings which cost them not a cent but they sure have benefited BIG time from the sweet deals given to them by worthless politicians who work for them. The takers are always around in lamb’s clothing while they take from the people’s offering plates. I love it when Walmart hits the front page with their $1,000 donation to teachers while in the meantime they wanted their TIF so their development costs can be paid for by the people and to the tune of millions and millions of lost tax revenue for the people – takers have the people pay BIG time one way or the other. And the Coleman project was another sweet deal that will cost the taxpayers millions and millions of lost tax revenue so you can have hire and fire jobs, no benefits, jobs that create more social costs for the people. Add the 38 companies in New Century who only take along with the investors, builders, etc. who want to pay taxes on prooperty they say should be appraised and assessed as ag use when it should be commerical vacant – the takers are everywhere you turn and supported by people who YOU elect into office. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot – the people continue to do it and will get higher and higher taxes and other adverse affects from cronyism government.

    Farmers Market is great for the community but not the connivers and the takers in their lamb’s clothing who work so hard to look like the “good citizens” but who are far from them.

    Opinion piece of March 21, 2011 by Judith.

  14. Speechless says:

    So Judith don’t go. You have alienated everyone anyway

  15. I can go where I please and I will pay my way when I do go somewhere, at least until the takers put me in the poor house. If the truth alienates people, then so be it. Truth is hard to swallow when your image is shown for what it is. Meet your financial responsibilities to your community rather than always looking for the sweet deal which will increase your bank account. You can be a taker or a giver – the choice is yours.

  16. This information needs to be shared so here it is. This article from the Will County, Ill. area where the Elwood Intermodal is. There, too, they have the worthless politicians who will take totally unreasonable risks for their people and will heap one TIF on top of another TIF which so financially rape the people with the special interests as the thieves. And the people keep voting for these jaybirds. I like how the Village President abstained from voting since her employer is involved in this debacle. If this doesn’t remind you of a Madoff ponzi scheme then I don’t think you have a brain in your head. But one thing is for sure, it is the people who are paying for these lowlifes to line their pockets.


    Wheeling developer needs $2 million to finish project
    $2.7 million needed to finish, he says

    Gary Levitas said he needs more than $2 million from the village of Wheeling to finish his townhouse project along Wolf Road.

    However, both the village attorney and the village’s tax increment financing consultant have concerns about granting his request.

    “The worst case scenario is that the project fails and the property reverts back to the village,” Village Attorney Jim Ferolo at last Monday’s board meeting. “Then you would have to market it to another developer. It could end up in litigation.”

    Levitas started the Millbrook Pointe townhouse project at 431 N. Wolf Road two years ago. He’s built 26 units so far and 20 of those are either sold or under contract. He wants to build another 34 units, but needs the funds before he can get started.

    More specifically, he needs $2.7 million, with $900,000 of that upfront, so he can buy the land from the bank.

    “I’d like to get rid of the bank so I’d own the land free and clear,” Levitas said. He said the village can give him the remaining money as he sells the townhouses, which are priced between $269,000 and $399,000 for three- and four-bedroom units, so that would be money generated by new property taxes from the development.

    If this story sounds familiar, it’s because last year the village board approved giving the Smith family $6 million in tax increment financing funds, bringing the village’s total contribution to Prairie Park up to $10.5 million. The final $3.5 million of that deal also had a performance-based clause, meaning the money will only be issued as Smith sells new units.

    Is Levitas familiar with the Smith deal? You bet. In fact, his project is kitty-corner to theirs.

    “I don’t think the village wants a half-finished project,” Levitas said.

    “That’s not going to do anyone any good. The village wants this finished and the people that live there want it finished.”

    Like Prairie Park, Millbrook Pointe is in a tax increment financing district.

    In a TIF, additional property tax money generated by new development goes to pay for expenses associated with the development instead of going to schools, parks and village government.

    Typically, before a development starts, the village will sign a contract with the developer committing money as an inducement to encourage proceeding with the project.

    Prairie Park had such an upfront deal, but later the Smiths said they needed additional funds to complete the project because of the collapse of the housing market.

    Levitas didn’t request any funds before starting the development, but he argues the money he is asking for is covered by property taxes his development paid into the TIF district’s coffers.

    “The amount of taxes that have already been paid from Phase One more than cover this,” he said.

    However, because the village didn’t budget him any TIF funds, the money is not available without transferring funds from other village TIF districts, village Finance Director Michael Mondschain said.

    That’s a problem, according to some trustees, who didn’t make a decision on the funding last week.

    “I’m pretty sure we’re going to run out of Peters to pay Pauls,” said Trustee Patrick Horcher.

    “It’s difficult with this kind of financial dominoes.”

    Trustees Robert Heer and Ken Brady agreed.

    “It’s too risky,” Heer said. “I would consider something that is only performance-based, but that doesn’t seem to be an option.”

    “God forbid something were to happen,” Brady added. “We would be the developers.”

    Robert Rychlicki, executive vice president of TIF consultant Kane, McKenna and Associates, told trustees “there is risk associated” with the proposal.

    “The housing market is not the strongest sector right now,” Rychlicki said.

    Village President Judy Abruscato abstained from the discussion because her employer, MB Financial, is involved with the project’s financing.

  17. Yawn.

  18. I have family in both the areas around the Texas intermodal and the Illinois intermodal. They always plan travel the back roads to avoid the heavy truck traffic. Former Kansas Senator Karin Brownlee, now Kansas Labor Secretary, reported how much she liked the Texas intermodal, but not all the truck traffic around Emporia, Kansas. Well, where does she think all the truck traffic is coming from??? Coming attraction for us. Wonder how she will like all the traffic coming out of the Gardner-Edgerton area??? Already, not unusual to see several trucks resting off the entrance/exit ramps at Edgerton 202 to I-35.

  19. Hard to take Granny serious at this point since she thinks all of the ag land is gone or going.

    The number 1 industry in Kansas is agriculture.

  20. Do you think agriculture is the No. 1 industry in Johnson County which is part of the state of Kansas? If it is, we should have the greatest of the great Farmers Market……….and I would love to get rid of some of those farm subsidies that we all pay for but most very seldom are aware of or know how much we pay for them…….I would love to be able to grow some working brains since I believe there is a high demand for them……….

  21. Here is some brain food for today.


    EWG began its research and computer analysis on what has become the Farm Subsidy Database some 17 years ago with the goal of to answering a simple question: who is receiving the money?

    When the database first went online, in 2004, it left no confusion about where the bulk of the billions in taxpayer subsidies went: to the wealthiest and largest farm operations in the country. It was our hope that by laying bare the convoluted laws and the games individuals and corporations play to maximize their government take, policymakers would feel compelled to reform these programs and better target government assistance to meet desired and stated goals. And let there be no mistake: while some critics may argue that farm subsidies should be eliminated altogether, EWG has always maintained that they have a place, should be focused on small to mid-sized farming operations with demonstrated economic need, and should have limits to prevent large farms from accumulating such a disproportionate share of the benefits. There are enough technological and economic forces already at work, driving the consolidation of farmland ownership and control into the hands of an ever-smaller group of mega-operators. No need for taxpayers to bankroll the demise of the family farm in the name of saving it.

    Nor does it make any sense to expect struggling farmers in developing countries to compete against both our famers and our treasury to scrape together a living in globalized commodity markets.

    The improprieties of our farm subsidy system have become such a problem in world trade that the Obama administration has recently inflicted a new subsidy affront on U.S. taxpayers. In order to avoid politically awkward reforms in America’s cotton subsidies, which have been found to contravene World Trade Organization rules, our government has “settled” matters by agreeing to subsidize Brazil’s cotton farmers to the tune of a half-billion dollars over the next several years.

    It was also clear that commodity subsidies routinely absorbed, not to say wasted, funds that either could be kept in taxpayers’ pockets, or could otherwise be invested in programs to achieve other, highly desirable public goals. We lack billions of dollars needed to make school lunches healthier, maintain an adequate food safety net for low income Americans, promote local sustainable and organic food systems, or tackle agriculture’s truly daunting environmental and conservation problems.

    In other words, policy should make agriculture more sustainable, should be fiscally responsible, and should be fair and equitable for the diverse interests in the U.S. food and fiber system. It is hard to discern any of those principles in the subsidy lists we publish.

    EWG has had some success upending the romantic perceptions many Americans have about how their tax dollars are spent on farms and farming. Unfortunately, an examination of the latest data we release today reveals a fundamental lack of reform in farm payments.

    From 1995-2009 the largest and wealthiest top 10 percent of farm program recipients received 74 percent of all farm subsidies with an average total payment over 15 years of $445,127 per recipient – hardly a safety net for small struggling farmers. The bottom 80 percent of farmers received an average total payment of just $8,682 per recipient.

    In a time of growing federal budget deficits and increasing populist anger over government spending, it would seem prudent to trim wasteful agriculture programs. Instead Congress – at the behest of the biggest agriculture interests representing just five commodity crops – has constructed a system that ensures profits for the largest growers of corn, cotton, rice, soybeans and wheat.

    Despite claims of reform, many of the top subsidy recipients in this update are the same operations we’ve seen before. Six of the top 10 recipients of commodity payments in 2009 were also in the top 20 in both 2007 and 2008. Of the top 20, 8 were in the list all three years, and 3 more were in 2009 and one other year. In contrast to the public fury over billion-dollar bailouts of Wall Street banks, all 20 top recipients in 2009 received more than $1 million each, several with multi-million-dollar hauls. And this is only one year’s worth of corporate handouts that have gone on for decades.

    Three of these repeat offenders did quite well in 2009. California’s SJR Farms received $2,069,453, Louisiana’s Balmoral Farming Partnership received $1,910,834 and Arizona’s Gila River Farms received $1,711,444.

    Federal subsidies flow to a favored few crops as well as a favored few farmers. Over seventy percent ($170 billion over 15 years) of farm subsidies supported the production of just five crops: corn, wheat, cotton, rice and soybean. Just four of those same favored five: corn, wheat, cotton, and soybean accounted for over 70 percent ($25 billion over 15 years) of the cost of crop insurance. The vast majority of farm subsidies go to raw material for our industrialized food system, not the foods we actually eat. Even less money goes to support the production of the fruits and vegetables that are the foundation of a healthy diet.

    In 2009, a full 60 percent of farm subsidies flowed to States represented by Senators serving on the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry. Congressional Districts represented on the House Committee on Agriculture received 37 percent of all farm subsidies that year. Members representing four out of the top five Districts in terms of farm subsidies serve on the House Agriculture Committee. Is it any wonder it is an uphill climb to reform farm subsidies?

    Ten states, Texas, Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, North Dakota, Nebraska, California, South Dakota and Missouri, accounted for 56 percent of total subsidies in 2009.

    Finally, while this corporate giveaway has gone on unabated, conservation continues to be shortchanged. While we don’t have the full data for NRCS conservation programs in 2009, in 2008 conservation programs were funded well below their authorized levels. The EQIP program alone received $890 million below its promised level of funding from FY2005-FY2009. Furthermore, conservation has taken a direct hit as a result of the biofuels mandate that has driven up crop prices, causing a boon to commodity farmers and a reduction in price support payments. Enrollment in the Conservation Reserve Program peaked in 2007 – the year Congress passed the new biofuels targets – with CRP payments dropping by 6 percent since then.


    Bet Sen. Roberts knows all about farm subsidies and those who receive them and help bankroll Roberts.

  22. Total USDA Subsidies in Johnson County, Kansas, 1995-2009
    Subsidy Recipients 1 to 20 of 946
    Recipients of Total USDA Subsidies from farms in Johnson County, Kansas totaled $27,466,000 in from 1995-2009.

    Rank Recipient
    (* ownership information available) Location Total USDA Subsidies
    1 Lloyd E Lynn Gardner, KS 66030 $611,692
    2 Brunker Farms Inc ∗ Olathe, KS 66061 $575,535
    3 Finley Farms Inc ∗ Edgerton, KS 66021 $558,812
    4 David Voigts Wellsville, KS 66092 $549,874
    5 Thomas Enterprises Inc Of Kansas ∗ Gardner, KS 66030 $529,156
    6 Patrick Leroy Lenning Wellsville, KS 66092 $494,188
    7 Anderson Valley Inc ∗ Harrisonville, MO 64701 $484,315
    8 Richard L Nellor Gardner, KS 66030 $448,424
    9 Robert Lynn Gardner, KS 66030 $419,234
    10 Jeff Mills Olathe, KS 66062 $399,164
    11 Mike Manson De Soto, KS 66018 $383,975
    12 Russ Nellor Gardner, KS 66030 $349,977
    13 Larry Stricker Gardner, KS 66030 $337,633
    14 Carl F Krauss Olathe, KS 66062 $294,008
    15 Bradley K Aust Lacygne, KS 66040 $289,019
    16 Omar J Holtgraver Edgerton, KS 66021 $288,905
    17 Degrande Farms ∗ Gardner, KS 66030 $268,052
    18 Gieringer Farms Lc ∗ Edgerton, KS 66021 $267,888
    19 Denny L Dwyer Edgerton, KS 66021 $263,381
    20 William F Voigts Jr Wellsville, KS 66092 $248,778

    * USDA data are not “transparent” for many payments made to recipients through most cooperatives. Recipients of payments made through most cooperatives, and the amounts, have not been made public. To see ownership information, click on the name, then click on the link that is titled Ownership Information.

  23. Speechless says:

    Back to the farmers market article…I think bringing the farmers maket to downtown Gardner would be GREAT!!!!

  24. Here’s another local name you should all be familiar with:

    Linda Meisinger received payments totaling $2,888 from 1995 through 2009

    Crop Payments 1995-2009
    Wheat Subsidies** $1,280
    Corn Subsidies** $805
    Sorghum Subsidies** $365
    Oat Subsidies** $24

  25. Really... says:

    Reply to Ecosto.
    “Granny is right. The government needs to step in and tell land owners who they can and can’t sell their land to.

    Before any farmer sells his land, it needs to be put up to a vote of the people in that county. He needs to disclose who he’s selling it to and if their intended use is anything other than farming it needs to go to a vote.”

    eCostco, when you want to see your house or business, I want to be allowed to vote on whether you can sell it, to whom, and for how much. You don’t seem to understand that farm land is private property and YOU don’t control it. The owner does and the have the right to do whatever they dang well please with it!!!

  26. Not bad for somebody that runs a pottery shop

  27. Really... says:

    And…Judith. If it weren’t for farm subsidies, you wouldn’t be able to AFFORD to buy food at the local grocery store! Ask any farmer and I’ll bet you they would LOVE to have the subsidies go away and be able to truely charge a supply and demand driven price for their commodities – they’d have a heck of a lot more “green” in their pockets for sure!

  28. @Really — I was using sarcasm to point out the problem with Grany’s point. Farmers sold their land willingly to developers and they should be able to do what they want with their land. Granny made it sound like there was some grand conspiracy to take away farmland.

    The problem you have with people like Judith and Granny is they want everything to fit their particular view of the world and as long as it fits their view its just fine.

  29. Jerry L Kellogg Sr says:

    Regardless the efficacy of farm subsidies, I have found it interesting to see on the USDA database (which lists 314 entries with a Gardner address; 108 in Edgerton) names associated with local businesses, school boards, city councils, municipal commissions and political campaigns – some folks with public résumés listing primary occupations other than farming. I was not aware so many were also struggling to competitively supply our grocery stores with vegetables, grains, dairy and meat. And to think of all those years when I felt bad about my tomato plants failing to meet my expectations.

  30. Interesting:

    Mark Raney received payments totaling $3,240 from 1995 through 2009

  31. So Judith is Larry a double-dipper?

    Larry Alsup received payments totaling $5,175 from 1995 through 2009

  32. And Alsup got over $92,000 in tax refunds from the Downtown Enhancement District handout thru 2009 – haven’t checked to see how much more he got in 2010 – same way with Sawyer who got over $23,000 in tax refunds under the same program thru 2009. And Mertz has made his way for years with the sweet deals such as his IRB/Pay-in-Lieu Agreement whereby he got cheap financing and a 70% tax break.

    Just this morning I was checking on the land that the School Dist. was trying to buy for the two new schools. Four different parcels of land are involved. On just one parcel which involves around 46 acres of land which is right down the road from me had a lovely tax bill of around $350 PER YEAR since the property was getting assessed as ag use which is no more correct than a man in the moon but another loophole for the investers, builders, developers to use. Wonder why you don’t have money for your schools or anything else – this is a perfect example along with farm subsidies, tax incentives, tax abatements, tax refunds, tax credits, etc., etc. as to why you don’t have enough tax revenue for any government entity – the takers aka as special interests, big biz, developers, thieves, etc. are getting the sweet deals and you pay up the gut to keep them in the style to which they are accumstomed.

  33. @Really... says:

    Sadly, much of the farm land in SWJOCO is now being platted for future development. Watch the Johnson County Charter Commission that Danedri Thompson has covered – a committee made 99% of people (mainly lawyers) from the north and eastern part of the county. They will be deciding the future of the undeveloped parts (read: SOUTH and WESTERN) portions of Johnson County. That is where YOU live, folks. They will decide how the land will be used 10, 20, 30 years from now. They will tell the farmers how their land can be sold – as industrial, as residential, as commercial…that will effect the value of the land. And THEY decide – not the farmers and landowners.

    Calvin Hayden (former JoCo Sheriff’s Deputy), our representative on the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners could have appointed more representation from Gardner, Edgerton and Spring Hill to the board, but he made a political appointment and appointed one of his buddies from the Sheriff’s Dept. You would think, since so much of the undeveloped land lies in these areas, the Board would respectfully hope to glean some input from members of these communities.

    Believe me, if it benefits the government they will find a way to force you to sell it. This isn’t a JoCo problem or a Gardner problem (although plenty of it exists here). Here are a couple of articles on a Supreme Court decision that said a development would benefit the greater good and forced farm owners to sell to a private developer. Incidentally, the development went bust and now the land sits empty.



    On another note – I am curious, Linda Meisinger has lived in this community for 30 or more years and, while she doesn’t live in Gardner-proper, she has owned a business here for probably 15-20 years. I hope someone could shed some light on why she is the boogey man.

  34. Really... says:

    @Ecosto says…thanks. My blood pressure has returned to normal now. :)

  35. Very little of the farm bill goes to farmers. Most is to food stamps and school lunches. The data that the EWG shows is not a straight subsidy but can be loans from the FSA and NRCS payments or federal crop insurance payments for a loss (they don’t cover all of a loss either).

    If you don’t want to pay a subsidy then don’t allow foods to be traded on the markets and don’t require farmers to report their acreages and head counts. Don’t use food as a baragaining chip with other countries either (tariffs and embargo’s).

    Most farmers would give up all subsidies if they had these things addressed. Our food is cheap even factoring in a subsidy.

    The top earner on Judiths list from ewg averaged $38,230.75/yr. That says nothing as we don’t know the costs, yields, acres, how many individuals under that farm name, and other important factors. These people have a lot of risk in making a living and feeding us.

    As for names on the list that live in the city. Well they can still have ownership in a farm that has them pay in and likewise recieve a return.

    Very few city people understand the broad scope of agriculture and how many farms are structured. You can’t operate over a million dollars worth of equipment, make land or rent payments, pay for seed and chemicals, hoping that weather cooperates without some strategy and diversity. farmers are not an old boy in overalls and a hoe.

    I did not make the post at 9:19am either. Maybe we should have registered names?

  36. And Skeptic makes it completely clear that he is either a full blown taker or one who enables them – not much difference.

    Mr. Lynn was the first on the list and here is a breakdown on the subsidies he has received and doesn’t look like any loans or federal crop insurance involved to me:

    Lloyd E Lynn received payments totaling $840,254 from 1995 through 2009
    Year Conservation Subsidies Disaster Subsidies Commodity Subsidies Total USDA Subsidies
    1995 $2,351 $0 $10,955 $13,306
    1996 $2,347 $0 $11,064 $13,411
    1997 $0 $0 $34,110 $34,110
    1998 $9,836 $0 $36,600 $46,436
    1999 $10,000 $9,995 $133,519 $153,514
    2000 $9,903 $743 $109,938 $120,584
    2001 $3,277 $80,000 $73,107 $156,384
    2002 $1,677 $0 $10,110 $11,787
    2003 $0 $33,862 $31,043 $64,905
    2004 $201 $0 $49,417 $49,618
    2005 $0 $30,442 $37,424 $67,866
    2006 $1,369 $0 $45,335 $46,704
    2007 $0 $0 $21,374 $21,374
    2008 $0 $0 $21,341 $21,341
    2009 $0 $0 $18,914 $18,914
    Total $40,961 $155,042 $644,251 $840,254

    Crop Summary for Lloyd E Lynn
    Crop Payments 1995-2009
    Corn Subsidies** $288,739
    Soybean Subsidies** $160,275
    Wheat Subsidies** $125,303
    Sorghum Subsidies** $50,845
    Oat Subsidies** $159

    Counties where payments were made from
    County Subsidy Payments 1995-2009
    Johnson County, Kansas $611,692
    Franklin County, Kansas $227,193
    Total $840,254


    Here is some info on crop insurance. Another reminder there are takers throughout our society and you pay every day for the costs.

    The cost to taxpayers of yet another subsidy subsystem, the federal crop insurance program, mushroomed from $2.7 billion in 2005 to $7.3 billion in 2009, precisely because prices were high. The cost of crop insurance goes up as crop prices increase because the government’s premium subsidies, and its subsidies to crop insurance companies for administrative and operation costs, are tied to the cost of policies–and policy expenses rise with crop prices. And since it is taxpayers who pay a good portion of crop insurance claims, the costs we incur for any crop losses climb along with crop prices.

    Even after the bitterly contested new health insurance reforms eventually take effect, most crops could fairly be said to have better coverage than many people in this country–and it’s single-payer coverage, at that (the single payer, taxpayer, being you). Taxpayer subsidized crop insurance is available to farmers if their crop is eligible for coverage in their area and provides, at no cost, 50 percent catastrophic coverage to farmers. (In 2008, just four crops–corn, cotton, soybeans, and wheat–accounted for more than two-thirds of total acres enrolled in crop insurance and for the vast majority of subsidies through the commodity programs).

    Small wonder that since 1995, America’s public option-only crop insurance program has cost taxpayers $35 billion.

    One thing government subsidies reliably produce, other than ingratitude and a sense of entitlement among their recipients, is a demand for more subsidies. Commodity crop agriculture, for decades now a virtual ward of the federal government by dint of the aforementioned subsidies, offers fresh proof of that maxim each year.

  37. OK Judith.

    Still doesn’t look like a lot with everything involved in producing your food.

    How much are you willing to pay for food? I know that you are on gov’t payments so keep in mind the hypocrisy that you live in when you talk about farmers getting subsidies.

    Are you willing to address the issues that farmers have little control over prices like in my prior post?

    Kill the subsidies but also kill food stamps, welfare, and other gov’t entitlements and forms of socialism. Take the commodities off the exchange and leave the politics out of international trade of ag commodities.

    This is a subject that you do not understand. You are better at blaming cronies and comparing Gardner to Bell, CA.

  38. Tell me about those “governments payments” that I am on…….I want to hear all about that. The only welfare we have now is corporate welfare……..any welfare programs for the ordinary person was killed numerous years ago or have I missed something? Farm subsidies must have really hit home with you since you are so irate – tell us more about your occupations through the years. Have you ever been poor enough to need food stamps? If not, what kept you from having to ask for that type of help (many people have lost jobs in recent years due to no fault of their own and are truly stuggling and losing much)? What are the other government entitlements and forms of socialism that you must really hate – I am all ears on that statement made by you – I want to hear specifics on these things. Must I remind you again that I don’t COMPARE Bell, Ca. to Gardner, Ks. but do remind citizens to be involved in their city government so what happened in Bell, Ca. doesn’t happen here in Gardner, Ks. – you are as good at spreading the lies and the hate as the Beasley Bunch but wait – you probably are one of the Beasley Bunch or a person who would enable and support them!!!!!

    Be sure to tell me more about what I do not understand about farm subsidies – please educate and inform me. I will be waiting.

    What kind of “government payments, pensions, 401K, IRAs, Medicare, etc.” that you are on or will be on when you retire????? I am sure it won’t be any type of entitlement, government payments, forms of socialism, etc. No man is an island, Skeptic, but you certainly think you are the whole island. You need a huge dose of humble – make a better person out of you.

  39. I will let you do the research on farming and the subsidies. Hopefully you can gain some real knowledge about the costs and risks associated with farming.

    I don’t know any of the Gardner politicians. You sure let your relationship with the ex-politicians cloud your views.

    If you want 1 subsidy ended then we must end them all or we are kidding ourselves about any of this.

    Since you have dodged my questions I will quit asking them and will end this discussion with you. I really did want to know how much you were willing to spend on food though. Funny that you mention the poor needing help but you don’t want cheap food.

    Humble? You push your views and opinions on everybody wether it’s the schools, local government, or somebody building a convenience store near you.

  40. Former Agricultural Land developed for prosperity–

    Blue Ridge Mall 1958 now demolished

    Ward Parkway Shopping Center 1959 waning

    Metcalf Shopping Center 1967 waning

    Indian springs Mall 1971 defunct

    Bannister Mall 1980 closed

    The Great Mall of the Great Plains 1997 waning

    Where does the developing of agricultural land stop???

  41. Get a grip Granny,

    Your house is on agricultural land. You use a few malls as an alarm? All development has taken land. Of course those landowners (farmers) sold that land as it was their right to do so.

    Why not mention the schools, hospitals, succesful shopping centers, public roads, etc as examples of farm ground being developed?

    We are a long way from running out of farmground. Lot’s of other things to worry about before ever getting into who can develop what ground.

  42. FDA halts food imports from affected area of Japan

    The Associated Press

    Published: March 22, 2011

    Updated: 09:01 pm

    WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration said today it will halt imports of dairy products and produce from the area of Japan where a nuclear reactor is leaking radiation.


  43. to really?

    Looks like the only grip I need around here is to grip my wallet. But, the tax collectors will persist, higher & higher & higher.

  44. To clarify how farm subsidies work … in order to purchase crop insurance, farmers are REQUIRED to sign up for farm programs (which include subsidies) and to report information to the USDA about their production acerage. The subsidies are designed to help defray some of the cost (not all, but a little) of purchasing crop insurance and also to compensate the farmer for the additional reporting required of them under the farm programs.

    Anyone who thinks the average farmer is getting rich off farm subsidies is kidding themselves. The cost to purchase or rent land, buy or rent equipment, acquire livestock, seed, etc., and to fertilize, till, plant and harvest and market crops far outweigh any payments the farmer receives from subsidies.

  45. To add to my earlier post…basically, if you don’t like the way the farm program works – you should contact your legislator, not blame farmers. We’re just following the rules!

  46. And everyone needs to know and realize which entities are receiving the majority or the largest of the farm subsidies.

    Sorry to see Skeptic can’t stay and talk longer when it gets to details but, hey, what can you expect from someone who regurgitates so well what he hears from listening to Limbaugh and Glenn Beck…………I always like the socialism thing…….

  47. Judy you sucked me back in. I hate Limabagh and Beck. DON’T put words in somebody’s mouth! You are the queen at regurgitating the same arguments in every article about Gardner. I do hope that you find joy in something someday.

    You wouldn’t answer my questions so it was pointless to continue.

    How much are you willing to pay for food? You’ve dodged this one every time, have you found the courage to answer a simple question yet?

    If you want 1 gov’t program killed then kill them all. I’ll vote for it if you do.

  48. @Skeptic says:

    I think the government uses those subsidies to drive the cost of food up. For example, the government decided that there were too many dairy farms so they paid farmers to sign a 20 year agreement that they would sell their livestock and stop producing milk. I know this is true because my cousin took the deal. Once again, government picks the winners and losers by not letting the market decide. If my cousin (or the many other farmers who took that deal) would’ve decided they weren’t getting paid enough for their milk, they would’ve moved onto something else. Fewer dairy farmers = fewer cows producing milk = higher prices for dairy products.

    I certainly believe that the government is going to bat for big corporate farms more than the average family farm. And I certainly believe that no farmer on Judith’s list is breaking the law, they are simply taking advantage of what is available to them. If I read between Judith’s lines, I believe her problem is with the government giving away money rather than with the farmers…but I’m sure she will correct me if I’m wrong.

    I will probably be shopping at the farmer’s market (assuming the city grants them a permit to operate downtown) and I guess that would indicate that I’m willing to pay more for my food.

  49. Stephanie Davis says:

    Interesting conversation! Mr. Lynn is my uncle. He does not have the lavish lifestyle afforded by farm subsidies you are imagining. He is not “living high on the hog” as the saying goes. He is a modest man who works hard to make a living just like the rest of us. Too bad he wasn’t invited to chime in here. He doesn’t have the luxury of spending time bickering online; he is in the field 7 days a week, 365 days a year, growing crops and raising livestock so you have something to eat on your dinner table at night.

Comments do not necessarily reflect those of The Gardner News, or staff. By posting, commentators assume all liability. Please contact webmaster to report comments that infringe on copyrights, or are of a profane or libelous nature. Webmaster reserves the right to edit or remove content deemed offensive.


Speak Your Mind