January 20, 2020

Farm Bill; and, the Ag Economy

Farm Bill- Senate Focus

Nearly two weeks ago, the Senate Agriculture Committee passed a Farm Bill on a strong bipartisan vote of 15-5.  Without objection, the measure moved in astonishing time to the Senate floor, where debate began a week ago today.

Amendments focusing on the nutrition title (expanding cuts (v. 58-40); eliminating cuts (v. 26-70); and, block granting some programs (v. 60-36)) all failed, as did an effort to change the sugar program (v. 44-54).

In addition to other amendments, the Senate considered three amendments focusing on specific aspects of the crop insurance program.  An amendment eliminating the federal crop insurance premium subsidy for tobacco fell short (v. 44-52); however, a measure adding $5 million in funding to help eliminate fraud (v. 94-0), and an amendment to reduce the premium subsidy by 15% for farmers with an annual adjusted gross income of $750,000 or higher (v. 59-33), both passed.