US Senator Al Franken will be visiting the City of Mankato this week to discuss Rural Energy and Helping Homeless Veterans. The visit takes place on Tuesday. Franken will discuss his efforts to help farmers and rural businesses reduce energy costs at a forum on rural energy that will include USDA officials, Minnesota farm leaders, and local operators who have used the REAP program to cut energy costs. To date, more than 500 Minnesota energy projects have benefited from REAP, the Rural Energy for America Program that was enacted through the 2008 Farm Bill. Franken is a member of the Senate Energy Committee. Later in the day Tuesday, Senator Franken will tour the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans facility in Mankato that provides housing for formerly-homeless veterans. He’ll meet with residents and staff there to discuss the challenges veterans face.