Farm Bill News

President’s budget proposals would hurt rural America

The president’s fiscal year 2019 budget was released last week. This is an annual event, where the president formally requests funding for government programs from Congress. Since government programs live and die by their funding, this is the major annual opportunity for the president to set comprehensive positions and priorities for the government’s work.

President's budget eliminates rural programs

America stands to suffer as a result of President Trump’s 2019 budget, released on Feb. 12.

The president has proposed again to eliminate or shrink many programs that serve rural America, including those supporting rural businesses, cooperatives, and housing.

Trump is also calling for an investment of $50 billion in rural infrastructure, but this could put the onus on states already struggling with the economic fallout of depressed commodity prices.

Value of rural communities weighed at conference

What do you love about rural communities? We asked attendees of the Practical Farmers of Iowa’s annual conference last month, when they stopped by our Center for Rural Affairs booth.

“Neighbors invest their time, talents, and equipment to improve my farm, and vice versa.”

“The ability/willingness of the community to come together in times of need.”

“Connections and supporting small businesses.”

“Close-knit community of friends.”

“Farmer wave.”

60,000 beginning farmers benefit from USDA program

Interest in farming is strong. We hear from beginners, as well as retiring farmers and ranchers, each day who are looking for opportunities and searching for solutions to farm transition.

The 2008 farm bill introduced USDA’s first, and so far only, program focused on the next generation of farmers: the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program.

Congress considers bill to modernize crop insurance

We (Cora and Anna) traveled to Washington, D.C., last week to meet with our representatives in Congress. We met with staff from – count ‘em – nine congressional offices for Nebraska, Iowa, and Kansas, and stopped by several more to drop off our farm bill platform. We let them know the next farm bill must support conservation and beginning farmers, and strengthen crop insurance.

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