Oregon State University's Hermiston Agricultural Research & Extension Center will be able to conduct more research on local crops soon.
The Hermiston City Council approved the annexation of 168 acres Monday that will allow the extension center to buy water from the city and Port of Umatilla's regional water system to irrigate more land for research, according to a news release. The water will be used on land which isn't currently being farmed.
"The value that OSU Extension brings to the area can't be measured by the $2 million budget it has," said Hermiston Mayor Dave Drotzmann in a statement. "We're an agricultural community, and we need to do everything we can to support it."
The extension center serves nearly 500,000 acres of irrigated agriculture in Oregon and Washington's Columbia Basin. OSU has operated an extension center in the Hermiston area since 1909.