From the Dodge City House Ag Committee Field Hearing- House Ag Chairman Questions Panel OneSat, 21 Apr 2012 20:47:30 CDT
On Friday, Chairman Frank Lucas wrapped up the House Agriculture Committee's field hearing series in Dodge City, Kansas. It was the final hearing that was held across the country to listen directly to producers on the ground and gather input in advance of writing the 2012 Farm Bill. Members heard from producers of a variety of commodities and beef about the tools they need to continue to produce a safe and affordable food and fiber supply. Witnesses explained that one of the goals of the Farm Bill should be to provide opportunities for effective risk management for all of agriculture.
At the end of the comments made by the five members of Panel One in Dodge City on Friday morning, the Chairman granted himself five minutes more or less- turned out to closer to ten minutes than five- and explored several subjects. Tops on the list of questions from the farmer from Roger Mills County Oklahoma was an exploration of how Dee Vaughan, former President of the National Corn Growers Association, felt about his organization writing to the Agriculture Committees demanding that the so called "Shallow loss" program be included in the work of lawmakers. Vaughan explained he was, indeed, a member of both the NCGA as well as the American Soybean Association and the American Farm Bureau. And he without hesitation, called the arguments made by the groups wrong- at least for the south central part of the US. He contends that the shallow loss program that guarantees certain levels of revenue for various crops could end up promoting surpluses- and would then result in lower prices in the market place as the government program distorts- either in a good way or bad way- prices and as a result things like land values.
Lucas also asked Scott Neufeld to explain what Direct Payments have meant to his farming operation- Neufeld said he had used the money in several ways over the years- but in each case, it had meant an infusion of cash into the local economy of his community, Fairview.
Neufeld also discussed what might happen if Crop insurance subsidy premiums were limited. And Colorado farmer Terry Swanson, President of the National Sorghum Producers, responded to a question from Chairman Lucas about what influences planting decisions- including federal farm programs.
Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear this Q& A between Lucas and the five members of the first panel on Friday morning.
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