Beef Buzz News
Reauthorization of LMR Remains a Top Priority for NCBAThu, 28 Jul 2022 16:59:26 CDT
While the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association summer business meeting is underway in Reno, Nev., Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster, Ron Hays, had the chance to visit with NCBA’s Senior Director of Government Affairs, Tanner Beymer. Beymer and Hays talk about the United States Congress and their involvement in cattle marketing issues.
For over two years, Beymer said conversations have been about what the appropriate role of government is in the cattle markets. Recently, he added, congress has become very engaged in these issues.
“That two years’ worth of discussion has really kind of been building towards what we have anticipated to be some movement on these issues on Capitol Hill,” Beymer said. “We have seen that certainly in the last about three or four months.”
Beymer said the Senate Agriculture Committee had a mark-up on both the Cattle Price Discovery and Transparency Act and the Meat and Poultry Special Investigator Act. Both of those were approved by a voice vote, Beymer added, which means that they will now go to consideration on the floor of the U.S. Senate.
“Of course, there is only a limited number of legislative days remaining in the 117th congress, and with the other recent events going on in this country, I just don’t know if there is enough time to go to something as granular as some of these cattle marketing issues,” Beymer said. “That being said, there is always room for packages that move through the process, so we are going to be continuing our efforts to educate senators as to why mandating cash trade and creating a duplicative new and special councils office at USDA is not really in the best interest of cattle producers.”
At the top of the list of things NCBA would like to see happen when it comes to livestock legislation this year is a reauthorization of Livestock Mandatory Reporting.
“We do need to deal with LMR reauthorization and some of these other things before we go into the farm bill because we absolutely do not want those to serve as the basis for what could become a livestock title in the 2023 farm bill,” Beymer said. “I believe that LMR will not lapse. I think it will be included in whatever funding decision they come up with whether that is a full omnibus or continuing resolution.”
Beymer said producers need the certainty that only a five-year reauthorization of Livestock Mandatory Reporting can provide.
“While our first priority is to make sure that we don’t lapse in that authority, we are getting pretty vocal with members of congress that it is time for that program to be fully reauthorized,” Beymer said. “In the case of the Cattle Price Discovery and Transparency Act and the Special Investigator bill, the clock is really working in our favor. They are going to go on recess for the entire month of August like they do every year, and they also take off a good chunk of September and October so they can go campaign for reelection, which doesn’t leave a whole lot of time left to deal with anything.”
If we are going to move legislation between now and the midterm elections, Beymer said it is going to be designed to influence voters to go to the polls to either change up the party power dynamics in Washington or keep the current ones in place.
“I think that this Fischer-Grassley bill and similar pieces of legislation can motivate folks in the ag sector, but I don’t think that has a wide enough shadow to be something that Mitch McConnell and Chuck Schumer are going to be looking at as ways to message their points of view to voters.”
Click the LISTEN BAR below to hear more from Ron Hays and Tanner Beymer on policy regarding livestock marketing.
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