ASA Comments on House Ag Committee’s Proposed Farm Bill
July 6, 2012… St. Louis, Mo… The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture yesterday released the draft Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act (FARRM), the House version of the Farm Bill, which would trim $35 billion in spending from agriculture, conservation, and nutrition programs over 10 years as compared to current law. American Soybean Association (ASA) President Steve Wellman, a farmer from Syracuse, Neb., releases the following statement on the legislation:
"ASA is very pleased to see the House’s progress on the farm bill, and we appreciate the leadership from House Agriculture Committee Chairman Lucas and Ranking Member Peterson in releasing this draft. We are encouraged to see the House Agriculture Committee moving toward mark-up next week, as ASA continues to strongly urge Congress to finish the farm bill this year. ASA knows that the budget challenges facing the nation are indeed serious and we remain committed to a bill that bears agriculture’s fair share of deficit reduction responsibilities.
"With regard to commodity policy, the House proposal would offer farmers a choice between two commodity programs: a target-price program or a revenue-based program. A key priority for ASA throughout the farm bill deliberations has been to ensure that commodity policies do not distort farmers' planting decisions, and we look forward to working with the House to ensure that soybeans are treated equitably and that planting decisions would not be distorted by farm programs offered under the House bill.
"ASA supports a number of provisions throughout the House proposal, including reauthorization and funding of important trade and market development programs, reauthorization of agricultural research programs, and the focus within the conservation title on working-lands conservation and a gradual reduction of acres enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program. While no mandatory funding is provided, we are glad that ASA's Energy Title priorities, the Biobased Market Program and the Biodiesel Education Program, are reauthorized. Finally, we are pleased to see the House bill include H.R. 872, which will ensure that farmers aren’t required to obtain duplicative permits for pesticide applications."