Policy wonks: It’s farm bill time again (but there’s help)
Let’s all give thanks to Philip Brasher who is writing a series of articles on the 2018 farm bill for Agri-Pulse.
If you are curious—and brave enough—to dive into this incredibly important but overwhelmingly detailed and phenomenally politicized piece of legislation (my take on the farm bill is here) , here is the place to start.
He’s done three so far:
- Lesson #1: Every farm bill is unique – the last one was a doozy
- Lesson #2: The Farm Bill ‘Math’ is complicated and ever-changing
- Lesson #3: Regional divides make writing a farm bill more of a gamble
More to come. Don’t miss them.
In the meantime, just to get you started on the politics, literally hundreds of farm groups signed a letter to Congress urging it not to cut farm programs.
The undersigned organizations, representing America’s agriculture, nutrition, conservation, rural development, finance, forestry, energy, trade, local government, plant/animal health, agricultural sciences and veterinary medicine, labor, outdoor recreation, equipment manufacturing, cooperatives, hunters, anglers and crop insurance sectors, strongly urge you to reject calls for additional cuts to policies within the jurisdiction of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry or the House Committee on Agriculture.
During consideration of the 2014 Farm Bill, the Agriculture Committees made the difficult choices necessary to deliver a bipartisan bill. Budget cuts made in that bill should be recognized as Agriculture’s contribution to deficit reduction. We know the committees will once again face challenging budgetary and policy choices in the development of the 2018 Farm Bill. That is why it is so important you ensure the committee process for the farm bill can proceed with some budget flexibility.
I’ll be following this as best I can. Stay tuned.