WASHINGTON (KELO.com) – Congress is in the process of writing a new Farm Bill this spring.
Congresswoman Kristi Noem says the farm bill that we’re currently under will expire in September. She says Congress is working hard to get the bill passed through the House and Senate before the current bill expires.
Noem says keeping crop insurance programs intact in the new Farm Bill will be key.
“Nobody out there can farm without having crop insurance,” she said. “Banks require it for operating loans. Having private companies running that program has worked because producers have skin in the game. If there is a major loss in the country, it’s usually private companies that are picking up that slack. It’s much better than a disaster program, which is what happened before crop insurance came on the scene.
She says there are some changes she’d like to see in the new Farm Bill.
“I’ve got some changes to conservation programs,” Noem said. “We need more CRP (Conservation Reserve Program) acres in the state. We need to focus it on areas that we’re not driving up cash rental rates. We need to have that option for producers as well.”
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue says he wants the new Farm Bill to encourage entry into farming through increased access to land and capital for young, beginning farmers.
(Mike Tanner, KWAT, contributed to this report)