Farm Bureau Puts the Heat on Congress to Address Key Ag Measures

American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman says the farm bill isn't just a farm bill - it's an economic stimulus bill that creates jobs and helps small businesses and rural communities every year. He says Congress can - and must - finish a farm bill this year. While Stallman says it's obvious a new farm bill won't be in place by the time the current one expires on September 30th - he says the only extension Farm Bureau supports is a five-year extension that looks a lot like the new farm bill working its way through Congress. And Stallman is confident Congress can pass a five-year bill this year. On immigration - Stallman says we need Congress to pass reform now. He says the U.S. will lose billions of dollars in agricultural production to other countries if problems with the current system aren't solved. According to Stallman - it's important to make it easier for farmers and ranchers to hire the foreign workers they need. Authorization and funding of lock and dam projects is another critical issue on Farm Bureau's agenda. Stallman says more than 20-billion dollars worth of farm exports travel on our inland waterways - yet more and more of those waterways transportation structures are aging, failing or are outdated and obsolete. This month - Farm Bureau is communicating with members of Congress about the importance of all three priorities - the farm bill, immigration reform and waterway and port infrastructure improvements - through an organizational campaign called "The Heat is On."

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