Congress returns next month and immediately faces huge spending and debt ceiling challenges, before other politically important measures like tax reform and the farm bill.
House and Senate appropriators have both sent USDA spending bills to the full House and Senate, though neither has acted yet, and the two bills that both reject big cuts proposed by the president would still have to be reconciled with each other.
Trouble is, the fiscal year ends on September 30th, leaving little time to do that or pass other spending bills, so Congress is expected to again pass a temporary spending measure to keep the government funded.
American Farm Bureau Executive Director Dale Moore
Congress must also raise the debt ceiling by the end of September when Treasury officials say the government will run out of borrowing authority. And only when the spending issues are resolved, can lawmakers really turn their attention to other issues important to agriculture, including a new farm bill. Moore says
Moore says staffs on both sides of the Hill are already starting to write the 2018 farm bill, based on comments from panel leaders at recent hearings.
Tax reform will also be front and center this fall, though its prospects are clouded by the limited bipartisan support and the need for procedural steps to avoid a filibuster in the Senate.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting News Service.
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