Farm Bill News

Kansas lawmakers: Farmers are counting on you to preserve conservation in the farm bill

In February 2018, after the presidential budget was released, I wrote a piece highlighting the importance of conservation and the Conservation Stewardship Program. I made note that the presidential budget included cuts to conservation programs, and cited my growing concern that stewardship of our natural resources would be left behind with these damaging actions.

Farm bill is on the ballot this election

Results of this week’s election will have significant implications for the future of rural America. Voters should not forget the farm bill is on the ballot.

A strong farm bill is crucial for rural communities. It preserves our nation’s soil and water, assists the next generation of agricultural producers, and supports small businesses on main street. Unfortunately, Congress allowed the farm bill to expire on Sept. 30, 2018.

Lawmakers have stalled deliberations for a new bill for two major reasons.

Conservation programs encourage long-term sustainability

Congress, whether through dysfunction, neglect or some combination, has allowed the Farm Bill to expire.

This failure to act, besides leaving thousands of farmers and related businesses in limbo for planning purposes, has frozen conservation programs and all associated funding. The most important of those is in the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), which is a comprehensive, working lands incentivized approach to resource conservation.

Farm bill expiration fails young people nationwide

The farm bill is the primary method in which our government invests in rural communities across the nation – without it, our farmers would be uncertain and our communities without access to food and other crucial resources. Congress’ failure to pass a new bill, or an extension of the existing legislation, has left young people in rural areas with anxiety for the future.

Kansans talk farm bill in Washington

Since June, I have had the honor of helping the Center for Rural Affairs educate and interact with members of Congress and farmers from Kansas on the 2018 farm bill. Most of my work has consisted of phone calls and visits in and around Kansas. But, recently, I had the chance to head to the heart of the farm bill policy discussion, Washington, D.C., to visit with the Kansas delegation on Capitol Hill.

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