Mon July 30, 2012
Some House Leaders Push for Farm Bill Extension
The Farm Bill remains stalled in the U.S. House. Some House leaders have proposed extending the current Farm Bill another year. But not everyone is thrilled with the idea.
A new farm bill passed the full Senate, and the House Agriculture Committee, but has yet to be brought up for a full vote in the House. The legislation has fallen prey to partisan gridlock. Wisconsin Democratic Congressman Ron Kind says the House needs to pass a new Farm Bill, not a one year extension of the old one as has suggested by House leaders, “I think our farmers more than ever need some certainty they need to know what the rules will be in the next five years so they know what to plan and what to prepare for. And the fact the House leadership is punting especially in this summer of extreme drought and the difficult circumstances are farmers are facing around the country is mind boggling to me.”
The House could vote on the extension as early as next week. Karen Gefvert is the director of Government Relations for the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation. She says Congress should wait until after the August recess to vote on any extension, “So they have a chance to talk to farmers find out what their problems are, and find out what they need so they can make the right decision from there.”
Officials with the Wisconsin Farmers Union say Congress should act now to pass the entire Farm Bill. They say it will likely contain disaster assistance that farmers will need. The current farm bill is set to expire in September.