DeSantis Urges Funds for Manatees and Ethanol Production Hits COVID High
**Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is asking state lawmakers to approve nearly $4 million to help Florida’s manatees, which have been dying at a frightening rate.
According to www.orlandoweekly.com, the Fish and Wildlife
Conservation Commission’s budget proposal for next year includes $3.8 million designated to aid the manatees, the cow-size, aquatic mammals that feed on Florida’s seagrasses.
More than 900 manatees have died so far this year, nearly twice the average number.
**Demand for livestock loans grew in the third quarter, boosting agricultural lending activity, but demand for operating loans was more subdued, and total non-real estate lending remained near its past decade average.
The Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank says while the average size of operating loans also remained elevated, a smaller number of loans limited the overall financing of operating expenses.
The agricultural economy generally remained strong as elevated commodity prices continued to support farm incomes.
**Bloomberg says U.S. ethanol production reached its highest level since COVID-19 lockdowns brought the industry to a basic standstill.
Gasoline demand on a four-week rolling average hit the highest point since 2007 for this time of year.
The revival comes as corn is available at a relatively cheap price, setting the stage for better profit margins and a potential boost in overseas demand.