Thursday, December 11, 2008

New Farm Bill could be reopened to cut subsidies, says Kind, who's talking with the transition team

Democratic U.S. Rep. Ron Kind of Wisconsin, who last year offered an alternative Farm Bill that would limit subsidies and do more for conservation and the environment, said after meeting with President-elect Barack Obama's transition team this week that the five-year bill might be reopened. "Kind says there is going to be a reduction in government spending and that could mean a reopening of the Farm Bill," reports Bob Meyer of Brownfield Network.

Kind said Congress will also have to revisit farm subsidies because Obama "wants a more multi-lateral approach" to trade, as Meyer put it. At least one aspect of commodity programs will be addressed; "Kind says he will introduce legislation shortly to allow USDA access to IRS income information," which would resolve the problem of payments to farmers whose incomes were abolve eligibility limits, as the Government Accountability Office recently reported.

"There have been hints Kind is being considered for secretary of agriculture in an Obama Administration," Meyer writes. All Kind would tell him was "Never say never." (Read more)

No comments: