June 15, 2012
The U.S. Senate cleared a procedural hurdle and voted to proceed to consideration of the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012 (Farm Bill) with strong bipartisan support on a vote of 90-8. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, chairwoman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, and Sen. Pat Roberts, the committee's ranking member, co-authored the bipartisan reform bill that ends unnecessary subsidies, saves taxpayers $23 billion and helps America's agriculture economy continue to grow. Stabenow and Roberts will together manage consideration of the 2012 Farm Bill on the Senate floor.
Following the Senate's vote to proceed with the Farm Bill, more than 80 amendments were submitted by 31 Senators.
"This bill has garnered widespread praise from hundreds of farm, food and conservation organizations for its common sense reforms, deficit reduction and investments in our economic future. The 2008 Farm Bill is set to expire at the end of September - we must pass this commonsense bill immediately to give farmers the certainty they need to continue growing the economy. Sixteen million American jobs rely on agriculture. The time for reform is now," Stabenow said.
Margaret Soulen Hinson, president of the American Sheep Industry Association stated that the industry supports the Senate Agriculture Committee version of the Farm Bill particularly for its risk management provisions for sheep operations.
"Livestock indemnity and forage programs for weather related crisis, livestock risk program insurance and marketing loans are examples of positive programs for sheep producers," said Soulen Hinson. "We have also been working on communications to the U.S. Senate on several potential amendments that the sheep industry does not support such as attacks on checkoff programs, export support or legislative prescriptions on egg production, which represents a bad precedent for agriculture."
For more information and a summary of the 2012 Farm Bill, visit the Senate Agriculture Committee's website at www.ag.senate.gov/issues/farm-bill
Reprinted in part from Agri-View