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'Health & Education'
Sections C and D of The Greeneville Sun's 2013 Benchmarks edition -- "Agriculture" and "Health & Education," respectively-- are inside today's newspaper.
A one-of-a-kind reference, the annual Benchmarks edition is designed to highlight many of the most important events during the past 12 to 14 months in Greeneville and Greene County.
Benchmarks is traditionally a six-section, keepsake-quality publication of the Sun. The first two sections, focusing on "Business & Industry," and "Government," were published last Friday.
All the special sections focus on issues, people and events that have "benchmark" significance for the community.
For example, the 16-page "Agriculture" section today features these topics, plus others:
* the family dairy farms that once dominated the rural landscape of Greene County continued to disappear in the last year as more families were squeezed out of business by ever-increasing production costs and reduced cash flow;
* local beef cattle farmers, on the other hand, were wearing the biggest smiles on the land during 2012 as demand for their livestock continued strong in the wake of the historic drought in the Corn Belt that has greatly reduced the size of the national herd;
* local tobacco farmers, too, have a reason to smile for the first time in a decade as higher world demand points to better prices for the 2013 burley crop;
* the weather was a key player in agriculture again during 2012, as a spring freeze wiped out the local fruit crop, and the lack of rain in May and June brought major losses to some crops, especially early-planted corn;
* agritourism continues to be a bright -- and growing -- light for a number of local farmers.
IN 'HEALTH & EDUCATION'
"Health & Education" includes articles that focus on:
* national recognition for Takoma Regional Hospital for being one of only 13 hospitals in the nation to be named a "Top Rural Hospital" by The Leapfrog Group;
* continued growth of services at Laughlin Memorial Hospital, including the opening of a new wound care and hyperbaric medicine center;
* the fact that construction is soon to begin on the first phase of a $20 million expansion of the Greeneville/Greene County campus of Walters State Community Colleg;
* the opening of a new period of construction and expansion at Tusculum College highlighted by announcement of a new center for science and math, groundbreaking for two new residence halls on campus, and a major grant to provide a lab for the college's new nursing major program.
SECTIONS TO BE COMBINED
A copy of Benchmarks Sections C and D will be distributed with each issue of today's newspaper.
The final two sections -- "Community" and "Perspectives" -- are scheduled to be published on Friday, March 29. Those sections will be distributed with each copy of the March 29 issue.
When all six sections have been published, the complete Benchmarks edition will be available online at http://www.GreenevilleSun.com for the next 12 months.
In addition, when all six have been published and distributed to subscribers and single-copy purchasers, the sections will be combined into one package and sets will be provided to the Greene County Partnership for distribution at no charge to individuals, families or business representatives that ask for information about the community.
Other sets will be provided without charge to all Greeneville and Greene County municipal government offices, to local Realtors' offices, and to other locations where information about the community might be requested.
A limited number of sets of the full six-volume edition will also be available for sale at the Circulation Department of the newspaper, 121 West Summer St., for $2 per set.