Happy New Year 2024, Mayor Yutaka Sano of Hokuryu-cho

January 1, 2024 (Monday)

New Year's Greetings Yutaka Sano, Mayor of the Town of Hokuryu

謹賀新年 令和6年・北竜町 佐野豊 町長
Happy New Year 2024, Mayor Yutaka Sano of Hokuryu-cho


Happy New Year to all residents of the town.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your families a happy and healthy New Year in the year 2024.

Looking back on last year, new coronavirus infections have been placed in category 5 infectious diseases under the Infectious Disease Control Law since May, and our lives are returning to the way they used to be.

However, infectious diseases themselves have not disappeared, and we must continue our efforts to prevent their spread. We ask for your continued cooperation.

In agriculture, a key industry, farming operations progressed smoothly from the snowmelt season, but the high temperatures in June and July, which were considered abnormal, and the rainfall in early August caused significant downfalls in various fields, making it a very difficult year for growers.

However, I would like to express my deepest respect to all producers for their efforts in producing delicious rice this year. Although rice prices are on an upward trend, the situation remains difficult due to soaring costs of crude oil and materials. We will continue to urge the national and provincial governments to take strong measures.

The 39th Sunflower Festival, the town's major event, bloomed about 10 days early due to unusually high temperatures, and many fields were past their peak by the time of the Bon festival, but the flowers blooming simultaneously were very beautiful and worth seeing. The number of visitors to the festival was 208,000.

The "hometown support donation" has received a great deal of support from all over the country, and the return gifts such as Sunflower Rice and Sunflower Melon have been well received, and are expected to exceed 300 million yen for the ninth consecutive year. We will continue our efforts to support Hokuryu-cho through attractive town development and special products.

This year, the construction of facilities based on the Public Facility Reallocation Plan will begin. The first projects will be the construction of a disaster prevention stockpile warehouse and the rebuilding of a vehicle center.

There is a mountain of issues facing the administration, including measures to secure local public transportation, such as securing alternative transportation for the closed Sorachi Chuo Bus Hokuryu Line, and the development of Himawari-no-sato (Sunflower Village). We will continue to strive for the creation of a town where each and every citizen can live a life of spiritual enrichment.

In conclusion, I would like to wish you all a happy and prosperous new year.

Excerpt from "Kohoho Hokuryu" January 2024, No. 701 >

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