Dear Fellow Master Gardener volunteers,
I am a long-time Master Gardener volunteer in Greene County who cares about OSU Extension as much as you and am asking your help with the budget crisis that Extension is facing. As you may know, OSUE has already experienced cuts of almost 10%, resulting in more than 25 lost positions. This has affected all areas of the state. With the upcoming state budget, we could face more severe cuts that would be catastrophic to our programs, including the Master Gardener Voluntee program. State Senator Chris Widener met with a group of volunteers recently and noted that he is indeed receiving a lot of letters and calls regarding this issue. He also suggested that we follow up with contacts to Governor Ted Strickland and Chancellor Eric D. Fingerhut.
I am providing the address and contact information below as well as talking points. Feel free to copy and paste this information into a letter and add your own words and experiences. Tell them what Extension means to you and the impact that Master Gardener volunteers are making in their communties. Use all methods of communication - phone, fax, email, letter, etc! If you haven't written to your State Representatives or Senators, please do so immediately. The budget is in the House right now and will be sent to the Senate in May. Your words can be very helpful and will be heard!
If, like me, you value this program and want to do what you can to protect it, act immediately. The contact information is below as well as a sample letter. Thanks for your support and pass this along to your friends and neighbors who are also users of Extension!
Thais Reiff, Greene County Master Gardener Volunteer