Hoeven, Heitkamp, Cramer to hold farm bill round table

FARGO, N.D. – Senators John Hoeven and Heidi Heitkamp and Congressman Kevin Cramer today hosted a farm bill roundtable in Fargo with state community agriculture leaders to discuss passing a farm bill. The delegation said they are working to pass the right kind of farm bill that meets the needs of North Dakota farmers and ranchers and will pass both chambers of Congress by the end of the year.

The delegation began the discussion highlighting the five-year farm bill the U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee crafted and passed last year with a strong, bipartisan majority in the Senate. Hoeven, who serves on the Senate Agriculture committee and helped draft the bill, said the heart and soul of it is enhanced crop insurance.

The bill also provides $23 billion in savings for deficit reduction, streamlines farm programs and ensures that farmers and ranchers continue to have strong support not only with enhanced crop insurance, but also a provision to help producers with shallow losses. It continues the no-cost sugar program and provides support for research to ensure that U.S. farmers and ranchers continue to produce the highest quality, lowest cost food supply in the world. The senators and congressman are now working with their colleagues on both sides of the aisle and in both chambers to pass a farm bill in the new Congress.

“We remain committed to working to pass a farm bill that meets the needs of North Dakota’s farmers and ranchers, and one that can pass both Houses,” the delegation said. “We recognize that our nation’s farmers continue to face a number of challenges inherent in their work, and we want to make sure they have a farm bill that enables them to continue producing the most stable, safe and affordable food supply in the world.”

The delegation emphasized the need to retain many key aspects of the farm bill passed last year, including crop insurance, which farmers and ranchers from across North Dakota have indicated they want for better risk management. The delegation indicated this provision should remain a centerpiece of the farm bill. Other key provisions the delegation noted included cutting the deficit by more than $23 billion and implementing common-sense, cost-effective provisions that help producers with shallow losses, provide support for research and continue the no-cost sugar program.

Joining the congressional delegation for the roundtable meeting were representatives from the North Dakota Soybean Growers Association; RRV Sugar Beet Growers; North Dakota Farm Bureau; North Dakota Farmers Union; North Dakota Barley; Northern Canola Growers Association; North Dakota Corn; North Dakota Gran Growers Association; North Dakota Stockmen’s Association; North Dakota Dairy; and others.

Senators Hoeven and Heitkamp both serve on the U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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  • whowon

    bipartisan majority…to spend and mislead.

  • toomuchguvmint

    Not all farmers want the federal government manipulating land prices as well as targeting the largest farmers with the largest government benefits. Congress needs to be prohibited
    from engaging in the selective
    agricultural investment and profit guaranteeing business. Their sorry record of targeting select
    farmers with highly discriminatory multimillion dollar investment/profit
    guaranteeing policies has destroyed countless rural communities by neutering
    the ability of smaller farmers to compete.
    To guarantee that the largest and obviously potentially most profitable
    business always will have a vastly superior incomes renders the smaller
    farmers incapable of competing in this highly competitive business. If congress is going to be involved in the
    safety net business all farmers are equally deserving of
    comparably valued safety nets.