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Agricultural News

Latest Sorghum Notes Covers New Members, Export Report, And More

Mon, 16 Nov 2020 09:11:33 CST

Latest Sorghum Notes Covers New Members, Export Report, And More In the latest Issue of Sorghum Notes from November 13th. Sorghum Producers highlight some of the biggest stories. National Sorghum Producers extends its congratulations to both new and returning faces in Congress representing the primary Sorghum Belt, and we look forward to working with these individuals as take their seat in the 117th Congress. Take a look below at the latest Sorghym Notes.

Export Report
We saw another strong week of sorghum exports with China purchasing 6.9 million bushels and taking delivery of an additional 2.8 million bushels. Only two months into the marketing year, this brings the total purchases for the 2020/21 marketing year up to 150 million bushels, or 58 percent of the USDA's export projection. Basis rose again this week, up $0.15 to $0.20 across the interior and was flat on the gulf with sorghum trading at 127 percent of corn.

Atrazine Faces Ongoing Challenges
Federal Register entries concerning atrazine and the Endangered Species Act took place last Friday. These postings come as the use of atrazine is being challenged in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. The Environmental Protection Agency released a biological evaluation of atrazine that did not take into account much of the new science that has been done on Atrazine safety.

It is possible a full Endangered Species Act evaluation by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine and Fisheries Service will be triggered due to the initial biological evaluation. National Sorghum Producers is analyzing all the information released and will be providing comments to EPA on behalf of our members on the economic importance of atrazine. We will continue to provide updates as we learn more about what this means and what action might be needed from our producers. NSP is committed to ensuring farmers maintain access to vital inputs like atrazine and will continue to advocate for the use of this product.

Democrats Eye $3.4 Trillion COVID-19 Package as the “Starting Point” in Negotiations as Republicans Eye a Smaller Package
Although Democratic leaders had indicated prior to the elections that they would be willing to reduce the overall size of a COVID-19 relief package to $2.4 trillion, Thursday morning House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) declared that the House-passed HEROES Act-I’s $3.4 trillion price tag is now the starting point in enacting a bipartisan relief bill. However, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said Congress should pass a smaller, more tailored package considering vaccine announcements and declining unemployment. “I don’t think the current situation demands a multi-trillion-dollar package. So, I think it should be highly targeted, very similar to what I put on the floor in both October and September.” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) responded by saying Republicans “have proposed totally inadequate solutions” on COVID relief efforts.

Though Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin has previously led negotiations, the Administration is reportedly deferring to Senator McConnell to revive long-stalled talks. While each side has called for renewed negotiations, Democrats reportedly see the debate over COVID-19 relief as an issue for them in the January 5 run-off for the two Georgia senate seats that will determine control of the U.S. Senate. The original House proposal and the Senate proposal includes more direct aid to producers, although the second House proposal omitted such relief.

Fudge Vies for Agriculture Secretary

winning support
is not going to be a problem,” Fudge said. Several candidates have been mentioned for the USDA post, including former Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) and House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson (D-MN).

Scott, Costa Seek to Succeed Peterson as House Agriculture Committee Chairman
Representatives David Scott (D-GA) and Jim Costa (D-CA) have both put their names forward to succeed House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson (D-MN). Rep. David Scott has seniority and has been endorsed by Chairman Peterson and Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH). Rep. Jim Costa, who is behind Scott in seniority, has been endorsed by the California Farm Bureau and California Fresh Fruit Association. House Democrats will begin the process of choosing committee chairs for the 117th Congress next week. The group first takes up the chairmanships of ‘A’ committees, which are known as “exclusive” because their members cannot serve on another committee without a waiver: Appropriations, Ways and Means, Rules, Energy and Commerce, and Financial Services. After considering those chairmanships, the Steering and Policy Committee turns to the chairmanships of second-tier committees, known as “non-exclusive” because members can serve on other committees. Due to this scheduling, reports suggest it is likely that consideration of the Agriculture Committee chairmanship will not come up until after the Thanksgiving recess. The new chairs will not be confirmed by the caucus until early January according to the Rules of the Democratic Caucus, say congressional staff.

Biden Plans to Reconsider WOTUS
Revisiting Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule is part of a Biden Administration's regulatory agenda, according to an analysis by Hogan Lovells, a DC based law firm. The Obama Administration issued a revision to WOTUS in 2015 that extended the reach of the Clean Water Act well beyond the scope envisioned under majority opinions in three separate Supreme Court cases. The Trump Administration issued a repeal and revision of the Obama-era rule, returning the Clean Water Act to within the confines of those opinions. Hogan Lovells predicts that Biden will repeal the Trump regulation to once again expand the reach of the Clean Water Act.



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