Pam Lewison with the Washington Policy Center said it important that the Ag community remain active while looking to the future. Lewison, said trade is one of, if not the biggest issues facing farmers today, and they cannot allow others to decide their future.
“With the breakdowns with the talks with China, budget forecasts says that’s a loss of $1 billion for Washington state alone in the next few months. So, keeping an eye on those tariffs and how that negotiation is going is a timely topic for everyone to keep in mind.”
Lewison added farmers need to be prepared to go on the offensive between now at the 2020 legislative session in Olympia. She said this recent session was more about feelings and less about facts. But, that’s a trend she see continuing if the Ag community is idle.
“I’ll be looking at what happens in response to the statements on the senate floor that farmers don’t pay taxes. I think that is going to continue to be a rallying cry for a certain group of people, and it’s something that we need to be mindful of, because farmers do in fact pay taxes.”
Lewison said farmers need to have their voice heard, whether that’s on key pieces of legislation, or in telling the narrative of agriculture.
She says the days of farmers sitting on the sidelines is done.
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