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More Proof of U.S. Safe Food Supply

California Fruits & Vegetables According to the California Department of Food and Agriculture producers in California raise over 400 commodities, supplying over one-third of the U.S.’ vegetables and two-thirds of the fruits and nuts.  These commodities are among the top ten valued crops in California and include (2015):


Agriculture Opposition Firing Up

The two main organizations that oppose agriculture’s interests in the upcoming Farm Bill are the Environmental Working Group and the Heritage Foundation. Scott Faber with EWG and Daren Bakst with the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank that promotes free enterprise, spoke at a Farm Foundation forum recently in Washington. Both groups are vocal opponents…


WRDA Signed Into Law

WRDA Signed Into Law, Now on Two-Year Reauthorization Cycle Recently, President Obama signed the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) authorizing EPA, (Environmental Protection Agency) to provide assistance for a wide variety of projects including $170 million in aid to Flint, Michigan to help repair its drinking water system. In a bill-signing ceremony at the White…


Highlights of WIFIA

Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) projects will be evaluated individually by the Administrator of EPA based on criteria in the rule and a previously issued Notice of Funds Available (NOFA).  Once a project is selected for a loan individual credit agreements will be developed in negotiations between Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the…


EPA Begins New Water Financing Program

On Monday, December 19, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued an interim final rule on credit assistance for water infrastructure projects that will become immediately effective.  The rule allows EPA to begin implementing the new Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program. National Need = $660 Billion In the rule, the EPA estimates the…


Farm Bill Planning Needs to Happen Now!

The agriculture industry is experiencing a dramatic downturn as commodities pile up and prices fall to historic lows. Some in the ag industry are hoping the next Farm Bill can help — sooner as opposed to later. With farm loans steadily deteriorating, many farm groups are hoping to get the Farm Bill process started early.1…


Leadership on Congressional Committees 115th Congress

We have reviewed the potential impacts of the 2016 elections on pertinent congressional committees that are important to our clients’ issues.  Here’s what we’ve found: U.S. House UPDATE 12/01/2016 Today the House Republican Steering Committee met and recommended the Members below for committee chairs in the 115th Congress: Agriculture: Rep. Mike Conaway (R-TX) Appropriations: Rep….


Incoming Freshman Members of the U.S. Senate

After the 2016 general elections Republicans maintained majority control of the U.S. Senate with (currently) 51 of the 100 seats. Democrats currently hold 48 seats. To date, there remains one undecided Senate race in Louisiana.  This race will be decided in a run-off election on December 10. Below is a list of incoming freshman members…


Incoming Freshman Members of the U.S. House of Representatives

Below is a list of the 53 incoming freshman members of the U.S. House of Representatives for the 115th Congress.  There are 26 new Republicans and 27 new Democrats. After the 2016 general elections, Republicans maintained majority control of the U.S. House of Representatives with (currently) 239 of the 435 seats. Democrats currently hold 193…


Lame Duck Session Begins With Lots of Unfinished Business

When Congress returns on November 14 they are scheduled for 16 legislative days in the lame duck session with a planned adjournment on December 16.  There remain multiple, big-ticket issues to resolve upon their return and with each passing day, it becomes more uncertain if they will have enough time to pass all the measures. …


It’s not as far off as you think, work on the 2018 Farm Bill

In a recent article titled “It’s not as far off as you think, work on the 2018 Farm Bill“, the Farm Press‘s Hembree Brandon discusses the upcoming Farm Bill and how soon organizations need to act in order to get their point of view heard by the law makers that are framing the agricultural legislation….


Seed and Agrochemical Mergers and Acquisitions

A Response to Emerging Fourth Industrial Revolution Congress has begun to focus on recent mergers and acquisitions in the seed and agrochemical industry. This industry provides inputs to farmers for growing crops. There are six companies involved in the research and development, manufacturing, and distribution of agrochemicals and biotech seeds, namely Bayer, BASF, Dow, DuPont,…


Farm & Food Bill: $100 billion/year at Stake

Since the 1930’s and the Great Depression about every 5-years the U.S. Congress adopts a Farm Bill.  The Farm Bill contains production agriculture & food policies under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  Farm Bill titles include Commodity Programs, Conservation, Trade, Nutrition, Credit, Rural Development, Research & Extension, Forestry, Energy, Horticulture and Crop…


2018 Farm Bill: Tough Row to Hoe

The Agricultural Act of 2014 (P.L. 113-79), or “2014 Farm Bill” authorizes the continuation of agricultural and other programs of the Department of Agriculture through September 30, 2018.  Since the Great Depression in the 1930’s Congress has typically adopted a comprehensive Farm Bill every 5 years.  However, since the mid-1990’s Congress has struggled to timely…