Talking About the Farm Bill

1 decade 5 months 3 weeks ago Tuesday, May 01 2007 May 1, 2007 Tuesday, May 01, 2007 6:24:43 PM CDT May 01, 2007 in News
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But, hardly anyone showed up at Tuesday's meeting in Columbia to discuss the "farm bill," which usually creates policies and creates controversies. Around Columbia, it didn't create much attention, but out on the farm, it always does...

"I'm not sure I'm looking for anything. I've been so disgusted with the government in the farming business that I think they're wrong but I know we are at such high risk, and farmers have had to depend on the government because everyone wants to keep prices low," said farmer Kenith Martin

The most important thing about today's meeting back in town is that comments will eventually go to congress.

"The farm bill should be about three primary values: stewardship of the land, prosperity and profitability of the farmer, and finally fairness when the government intervenes in policy in rural America," said Brad Redlin, Director of Agriculture for the Izaak Walton League.

Mid-Missourians aren't the only ones getting to put in their two cents worth. The forum is also traveling to Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.

"They are important to me because they are a part of my livelihood. Since I produce, manage, and market, I must know the law. That's why I'm here today, to see what they have on the drawing board," said Saline County farmer Velma Bacon, who attended the forum.

The annual cost of the US Department of Agriculture's farm bill exceeds $90 billion.

"52% of all land in the United States is used for farming, which means this bill could have a big effect on farmers when it goes to the capital in the fall," Redlin said.

Until the bill is debated and voted on in the fall, local farmers will be left waiting.

REPORTED BY CAROLINE GABLE

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