Section 2-6A-1

Declaration of policy.

It is the finding of the Legislature that, despite the fact that agriculture has been and continues to be the backbone of the economy of the State of Alabama, increasing numbers of the state's farmers and agricultural businessmen are losing their livelihood due to conditions beyond their control caused by the current economic situation in agriculture and certain structural changes that are occurring in the economy of both the state and the United States. A crisis has developed in the state's agricultural sector that is not and cannot be met with existing programs and resources, with the result that more and more Alabama farmers and agricultural businessmen are being forced to leave farming or to seek supplemental employment, but without the provision of any coordinated program of assistance to help them retrain and make the adjustment to other forms of economic livelihood or to acquire the needed supplemental skills. The Legislature thus deems it in the best interest of the health and welfare of the people of the State of Alabama, and in order to avoid duplication and to increase efficiency, to provide programs under which individuals within the agricultural sector of the State of Alabama who have contributed greatly to the financial base of the state, but who are now experiencing difficulties in their farming operations due to causes beyond their control, may receive assistance from qualified professionals to provide needed career and technically oriented educational training and counseling services at reasonable cost and to provide for the delivery of those services to persons requiring such assistance during periods of adjustment, periods of transition from farming to other activities or during that period of time needed for them to acquire supplemental nonfarming skills. It is the intent of the Legislature that all agencies of state government and state educational institutions and agencies thereof at all levels cooperate with and to the extent possible coordinate with the commission and channel efforts along the lines set out herein through the commission.

(Acts 1986, No. 86-422, p. 763, §1.)