Supreme Court Rejects Initiative 300 Appeal

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John Crabtree, Center for Rural Affairs, (402) 687-2103 ext 1010
Lyons, Nebraska – Today the U.S. Supreme Court denied the Nebraska Attorney General’s petition for a writ of certiorari - a request for an appeal of the Omaha federal district court ruling that I-300 is unconstitutional. This means the U.S. Supreme Court will not hear an appeal and I-300 can no longer be enforced.
“This decision puts the ball back in the Legislature’s court. Judge Smith-Camp and the 8th Circuit are still wrong on the facts and we are disappointed that the Supreme Court will not give Initiative 300 the hearing it deserves. But now the Legislature must work diligently to create new corporate farming policies that will again level the playing field for family farmers, ranchers and rural communities,” commented John Crabtree, Development Officer at the Center for Rural Affairs.

In 1982, by a vote of the people, the constitution of Nebraska was amended to include a provision that prohibited corporate farming, with crucial exceptions for family farm and ranch corporations, commonly known as Initiative 300.

Initiative 300 has been part of an agricultural climate in Nebraska that has helped the state retain more family farmers and ranchers than most states while also retaining agricultural production, livestock production in particular.

“We will now turn over attention to the Nebraska Legislature, and immediately to LB 516 and whatever type of study or task force on corporate farming issues that comes from that bill currently pending in the Agriculture Committee of the Unicameral,” said Jon Bailey, Center for Rural Affairs Rural Research & Analysis Program Director.

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