The farm bill contains 37 programs that currently do not have budget baselines after the 2018 fiscal year. The programs account for $2.6 billion in spending.
The National Milk Producers Federation has released recommended changes to the Margin Protection Program in the next farm bill. The Federation says the proposed changes will ensure an effective safety net for the nation’s dairy farmers.
Ag groups and farm-state lawmakers are already making the case for more funding in the next farm bill due to the current state of the farm economy. However, groups like the Heritage Foundation, the Environmental Working Group, and Taxpayers for Common Sense gave testimony this week against the idea of more funding.
The House Agriculture Committee has scheduled two subcommittee hearings on the next farm bill next week. The Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry will hold a public hearing next Tuesday morning regarding conservation policy in the next farm bill.
Reduced spending under the 2014 farm bill contributed greatly to the nation’s deficit reduction effort. However, additional cuts to the 2018 farm bill would present perils on many fronts, a diverse coalition today told congressional appropriations and budget leaders.
Kansas Republican U.S. Senator Jerry Moran(more-ran) says wheat and sorghum need attention in the next farm bill, along with other key commodities including cotton and dairy.
The House Agriculture Committee held a hearing to review the economic challenges facing rural America. Members heard from several witnesses who highlighted these factors, including low farm commodity prices, declining net farm income, tightening credit conditions, a strong dollar, and unfair trade practices by foreign competitors.
The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture has listed food safety as a 2018 farm bill priority. Specifically, NASDA prioritized the need farmers and ranchers may have for low-cost loans to upgrade infrastructure to comply with the Food Safety Modernization Act.
The push for a new farm bill has gotten off the ground quickly with announcements and commitments by leaders of the House Agriculture Committee in their first meeting of the 115th Congress.
U.S. Senate Ag Committee Chair Pat Roberts, a Kansas Republican, and ranking member Debbie Stabenow, a Michigan Democrat, announced the first field hearing on reauthorizing the Farm Bill will be in Manhattan, Kansas.