Work on the next farm bill is underway on the floor of the U.S. Senate. But as debate begins, one of the main targets of extreme environmental groups and fiscal hawks will be the federal crop insurance program.
As we know, federal crop insurance is the most critical risk management component of any farm, ensuring that uncontrollable forces like weather won’t put farms likes yours out of business. No one knows what Mother Nature is going to do and the risk she brings to our industry.
Where would we be if not for the federal crop insurance program after facing one of the worst droughts in the last half century during 2012? This program is essential to the rural economy and preserves the production capacity of farmers. It not only provides farmers the certainty they need to plan ahead, but also to improve their operations through innovation.
The following amendments to strip away crop insurance have surfaced:
· This amendment aims to provide transparency to federal crop insurance subsidies by disclosing information on crop insurance participants who receive benefits.
· This amendment aims to reduce premium support for crop insurance participants with an Adjusted Gross Income (“AGI”) of over $750,000 by 15% for all policies beyond catastrophic coverage.
Flake Amendment (#1)
· This amendment would prohibit premium subsidies on crop insurance policies with a Harvest Price Option (“HPO”).
Flake Amendment (#2)
· This amendment would strike section 11011 which prohibits taxpayers from realizing budget savings upon renegotiation of Standard Reinsurance Agreement (“SRA”).
· This amendment would place a $50,000 cap on the amount of crop insurance premium subsidies a crop insurance participant can receive.
Please urge Senators John Thune and Tim Johnson to oppose these harmful amendments to the farm bill currently in debate on the Senate floor. These amendments will have an adverse impact on federal crop insurance, including adding AGI means testing, premium subsidy caps and disclosure of information on crop insurance participants. We need you to tell your senators to pass a clean farm bill that helps rural America. Your call is very important to blocking these amendments and maintaining a strong crop insurance program.
To make your voice heard, contact your South Dakota Senators.
Senator Tim Johnson
DC: (202) 224-5842
Sioux Falls: (605) 332-8896
Senator John Thune
DC: (202) 224-2321
Sioux Falls: (605) 334-9596
When you are connected tell them they need to reject harmful crop insurance amendments and pass a clean farm bill.