SD Corn Growers approve of Farm Bill passage

The South Dakota Corn Growers Association (SDCGA) commends the U.S. Senate for passing a farm bill that would reduce the federal deficit while continuing to offer crop insurance protection.
“We thank Senate leaders for their ability to compromise, taking the first big step toward bringing America’s farmers the certainty they need moving forward,” SDCGA President Mark Gross said. “Our organization’s No. 1 priority has been to preserve a crop insurance program that protects farmers during disasters. This bill will do that, and provide assistance only when needed.”
The Senate approved the farm bill Monday evening on a 66-27 vote. More than 100 ag groups, including the National Corn Growers Association, signed a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on June 5, asking for cloture so the vote could take place.
The U.S. House is expected to work on a farm bill within the next week or two, but its version faces an uphill battle because of disagreement on how much should be spent on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, commonly known as food stamps.
“We urge the House of Representatives to continue the progress by proceeding with their farm bill debate immediately, with hope that they can reach an agreement sometime before the current farm bill extension expires in September,” Gross said. “During last year’s severe drought, crop insurance saved many farmers from going bankrupt. Farmers willingly made sacrifices in this farm bill to help reduce the federal deficit, a step that’s good for taxpayers and vital to the nation’s well-being.”
Farmers pay premiums for crop insurance coverage. Nearly 80 percent of the money budgeted in the Senate bill would go toward food stamps. Less than 10 percent would go toward crop insurance, with 6 percent funding conservation programs. Programs would shield farmers against wild fluctuations in grain prices.
The Senate bill would cut spending by $24 billion over 10 years by eliminating direct payments to farmers, consolidating programs and reducing food-assistance abuse.

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