Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Farm Bill Update

The 2008 Farm Bill has finally passed (except the bill's trade title). After much confusion in Washington, the Farm Bill misunderstanding has been cleared up. The passing of the 2008 Farm Bill is good news for farmers' markets: it provides much needed resources and support for farmers' markets around the nation. Here are two articles explaining the connection of farmers' markets to the Farm Bill as well as a detailed explanation from the House Committee on Agriculture of the Farm Bill mishap.

Why We Need the Farm Bill

The Farm Bill that Congress has overwhelmingly supported over President Bush's veto has taken a beating from many pundits and editorial boards, ...yet there are good reasons ... to favor this bill, especially over the status quo.

The bill certainly should be better. It should include more reform on the commodity titles during this era of high prices for wheat, corn, and soybeans, and use savings from commodity reforms to provide additional support for nutrition, conservation, and healthy food, especially for America's 40 million poor. Reduction of the McGovern-Dole International Food for Education Program for overseas schoolchildren at a time of spiking world food prices was especially hurtful.

Read the entire story here.

Congress Overrides Presidential Farm Bill Veto

“Following veto override votes of 316-108 in the House and 82-13 in the Senate, the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008 has been enacted into law, with the exception of the bill’s trade title.

“The trade title was included in the conference report passed by Congress but was inadvertently left out of the official copy of the farm bill that the President vetoed. Today, the House also took action to correct the clerical error that resulted in the unintentional omission of the trade title from the enrolled farm bill and ensure that the entire farm bill is enacted into law swiftly. Most of the farm bill is now law and the Administration can begin implementing the new programs and policies immediately.

Read the entire story here.

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