Center for Rural Affairs Rejects Senate Payment Limits Agreement

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Chuck Hassebrook, Center for Rural Affairs, (402) 687-2103 ext 1018 or John Crabtree, Center for Rural Affairs, (402) 687-2103 ext 1010, (563) 581-2867 (cellular)
LYONS, NE - Chuck Hassebrook, Executive Director of the Center for Rural Affairs, rejected a negotiated payment limits provision included in the Senate farm bill draft that was released today saying, "The deal that was struck over farm programs might win a little more money for commodities, but it comes at the price of destroying family farming. The deal would continue multi-million dollar payments to the nation's largest farms and work against the one true reform on the table - the Dorgan-Grassley payment limits amendment."
Last week, Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND) and Ranking Member Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) struck a deal in farm bill negotiations with Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA).  The agreement formed the basis for the draft farm bill that will be offered to the Senate Agriculture Committee tomorrow.

According to the Center for Rural Affairs, the payment limitation provisions contained within the Senate farm bill draft fail to close loopholes that allow the nation's largest farms to receive multi-million dollar farm payments.  And the provisions do virtually nothing to tighten the porous paper limits that have become a point of criticism nationally.

"This deal is the opposite of reform.  Senators that want to support family farms and rural communities should support the Dorgan-Grassley amendment on the Senate floor and fight for it in conference committee," added Hassebrook.


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