Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Sen. Reid says new Farm Bill is 'high priority'

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has included a new Farm Bill in a list of "high priority bills" that he introduced in the Senate yesterday, Brownfield Ag News reports. The bill passed the Senate in June with overwhelming support, but stalled in the House over food-stamp issues, and died during fiscal-cliff negotiations.

Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said he was confident work on the bill won't start from scratch, Brownfield's Tom Steever reports. Grassley said the change in the Senate Agriculture Committee's Republican leadership from Northern to Southern influence might bring changes or debate about the bill that hadn't happened before, but he thought the bill could pass out of committee without much push-back. Farm policy experts are concerned, however, that the longer it takes to pass a bill, the more likely federal crop insurance will become a target for cuts, Ken Anderson of Brownfield reports.

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