Mar 29, 2012  |  Today's News

The Illinois Corn Growers Association is working very hard to pass a Farm Bill in 2012 instead of waiting until 2013, but why?  Why is a Farm Bill in 2012 better for farmers, environmentalists, and humanitarians than a Farm Bill in 2013?  Why “Farm Bill Now?”

It mostly has to do with the federal budget.  The baseline for farm programs today includes cuts of around 23 billion dollars.  To achieve this, the Ag Committees are talking about streamlining processes in all the titles including nutrition, eliminating direct payments in the commodity title and reducing the amount of acres in the Conservation Reserve Program. 

Will the cuts be enjoyable?  No.  Can Illinois corn farmers work within the new budget constraints knowing that they have to take their fair share of the cuts proposed to the federal budget?  Yes.

However, if Congress pushes the new Farm Bill in 2013, farmers start facing up to 10 billion more dollars in cuts that WILL get extremely painful.  Nutrition could sustain significant cuts, conservation could sustain cuts, and federal crop insurance subsidies will see cuts as well.  Passing a Farm Bill in 2013 definitely is NOT the best option for farmers, environmentalists, or humanitarians.

Nearly every agency that Illinois Corn met with in Washington, D.C. last week is advocating for “Farm Bill Now.”  That’s because whether they agree with our particular wants and needs or not, they realize that the situation only gets worse if Farm Bill negotiations are put off until 2013. 

Even members of Congress, knowing that Farm Bill negotiations will be tough right now, recognize that it doesn’t get any easier.

If you have a connection to your current member of Congress or your new member of Congress under the new proposed districts, consider calling them and asking for “Farm Bill Now.”