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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Farm Bureau members discuss Farm Bill in Washington

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Northwest Iowans who participated in a recent trip to our nation's capital included, from left in the front row, David Fordyce, Aurelia; Brenda Sundblad, Albert City; Larry Smith, Milford; Angie Sobotka, Laurens; and Sandra and Terry Naig, Cylinder. Back row, Phil Sundblad, Albert City; Kevin and Debra Jesse, Storm Lake; John Sobotka, Laurens; and Gary Twedt, Larchwood. Photo contributed
More than 80 Iowa Farm Bureau leaders visited Capitol Hill in Washington during the week of March 19-22 to discuss key farm issues, including the Farm Bill and the recent budget cuts announced for that bill, trade, conservation and crop insurance with their elected officials.

"The number one issue is the Farm Bill and how that budget will play out," said Craig Hill, president of the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation (IFBF), during a live radio broadcast of AgriTalk with members from the Missouri Farm Bureau. Last week, Republican House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan announced a proposal to cut $30 billion from agriculture spending over 10 years, causing more concern for items covered in the Farm Bill.

Hill said crop insurance is an important risk management tool for farmers and consumers alike. "It's (crop insurance) the number one provision in the Farm Bill. It's also important to consumers because this provides farmers a certainty that they can go year after year, lessening the risk on agriculture," which helps protect our food supply, said Hill.

"Our leaders are always ready to make this trip and make their concerns known to their elected officials," said Trudy Wastweet, Iowa Farm Bureau Federation national policy advisor. "It's important for Iowa farmers to create and maintain those connections so the people in D.C. are still plugged into what is happening and being discussed back home in Iowa."

The Iowa delegation met with congressmen Dave Loebsack, Tom Latham, Bruce Braley, Steve King and Leonard Boswell and also with senators Charles Grassley and Tom Harkin. In addition, they met with representatives from the American Farm Bureau Federation, the Environmental Working Group, the Biotechnology Industry Organization and the Australian Embassy.

The Iowa Farm Bureau national policy trip is an annual spring event for select county leaders. Each year, one-half of Iowa's 100 county Farm Bureaus have the opportunity to send a representative to speak on behalf of agriculture and rural Iowa. To learn more about the national policy trip and other opportunities for Iowa Farm Bureau members, visit www.iowafarmbureau.com.

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