Senator Chuck Grassley Comments on House Payment Limits

Release Date: 

09/05/2007

Contact(s): 

John Crabtree, johnc@cfra.org, Phone: (563) 581- 2867 or (402) 687-2103 ext. 1010; Or Chuck Hassebrook, chuckh@cfra.org, Phone: (402) 687-2103 ext. 1018
Senator Chuck Grassley issued the following statement about the House farm bill payment limits provisions. Grassley has worked with the Center for Rural Affairs to implement a hard cap on farm payments in the upcoming farm bill. He has introduced legislation with Senator Byron Dorgan to would set a limit of $250,000 for farm payments in an attempt to better target farm program payments to family farmers.
"As much as I appreciate what Chairman Peterson was trying to do in the House farm bill, the bottom line is that it isn’t reform. In fact, it's a step backwards. Big farmers will continue to get bigger and young and beginning farmers will continue to be shut out. The Senate needs to step up and pass a real cap that the public has been asking for," said Senator Grassley.

House Farm Bill Tightens the Noose on Family Farms
*(Excerpt from original release)

The U.S. House of Representatives Farm Bill would provide larger subsidies to the nation’s largest farms to acquire more land at the expense of smaller operations, according to a Center for Rural Affairs report released today. Those findings contradict the claims of House leaders that the bill would tighten farm payment limitations.

Loosening the Limits and Tightening the Noose: U.S. House Farm Bill Helps Mega Farms Squeeze Family Farms: http://www.cfra.org/files/Loosening the Limits.pdf calculates how higher payment limits and the additional payments that result will help large farms grow much larger under the House bill than under current law.

“Our analysis demonstrates that the House Farm Bill is not reform and claims that provisions in the House bill tighten farm payment limits are inaccurate. The House Farm Bill increases the limitation on direct payments by 50 percent over current law. Thus, mega-farms would be subsidized to bid land away from smaller operations – driving up cash rents, narrowing profit margins and tightening the noose on family-size farms struggling to prosper and survive in farming,” said Chuck Hassebrook, Executive Director of the Center for Rural Affairs.

*To view the original release about the Center for Rural Affairs’ report go to: http://www.cfra.org/node/676
The full report: Loosening the Limits and Tightening the Noose: U.S. House Farm Bill Helps Mega Farms Squeeze Family Farm, can be viewed at: http://www.cfra.org/files/Loosening the Limits.pdf

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