Illinois Corn Growers Association President Paul Taylor, a family farmer from Esmond, IL, released the following statement in response to the Senate Agriculture Committee’s passage of the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act by a vote of 15-5.
“Passage of a new, five-year farm bill that provides a safety net for America’s family farmers and a continuation of the much-preferred crop insurance program has been the Illinois Corn Growers Association’s top priority for some time now.
“The news out of Washington, DC this afternoon of the Senate Ag Committee’s final markup and passage of the bill is quite welcome here in Illinois. With the expiration of 2012 Farm Bill extension now just a few months away, policy uncertainty really holds all farmers in a tight grip.
“Such uncertainty really is unfortunate when there are so many other things that remain outside a farmer’s control. From last year’s incredible heat and drought to this spring’s delayed planting due to cool and wet conditions, there’s enough uncertainty to go around. The Senate Ag Committee’s work today helps alleviate some of that and paves the way for a successful completion of a new farm bill this year.
“The compromise reached regarding conservation compliance with regard to crop insurance is an excellent example of coalition building. Without such a compromise, the conservation compliance language that was amended into the Senate bill last year would have remained in the bill this year. That would have been unacceptable as it was a situation that was incredibly onerous and unworkable to our members.
“We eagerly anticipate the opportunity to support a similar revenue-based safety net plan and a continually improved crop insurance program as the House Ag Committee sets to work in the next few days on their own farm bill legislation.
“ICGA looks forward to quick action on the part of the House so that Congress may soon complete work on this legislation that is vital not only to rural America, but to all of us that enjoy a safe and dependable food supply.”
This link has the Committee Print as well as the amendments that were offered, adopted, withdrawn, etc. http://www.ag.senate.gov/issues/farm-bill
The vote total was 15-5. The “No” votes were: Gillibrand (D-NY), McConnell (R-KY), Thune (R-SD), Johanns (R-NE), Roberts (R-KS). The rest of the Committee voted Aye.