USDA Looking At Ways To Address Climate Change

The USDA’s top climate official, Robert Bonnie, recently said interest in the topic of the farming industry’s role when it comes to climate change comes directly from President Biden. “He tasked the Department of Agriculture with doing some outreach to agriculture to think about our toolbox of voluntary incentive-based approaches.” Bonnied noted the USDA is […]

Trade Policy will be a Big Topic on Thursday

Trade policy is expected to be front-and-center this week as the Senate Finance Committee considers President Biden’s nominations for the U.S. Trade Representative and the number two Treasury official. Wally Adeyemo is the nominee for Deputy Treasury Secretary, and Katherine Tai is the USTR nominee. How the Biden Administration will handle China in the wake […]

AFBF Supports Effort To Increase CCC Borrowing Limit

Legislation recently introduced in the House of Representatives would expand Commodity Credit Corporation borrowing authority from $30 billion to $68 billion. American Farm Bureau Federation Congressional Relations Director Andrew Walmsley says this would be the first CCC funding increase since 1987. “The $68 billion would be what inflation adjusted numbers would be for the Commodity […]

Ag Climate Alliance Expands and Makes Policy Recommendations

The Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance announced its membership is expanding as it puts together new policy working groups. Last year, the Alliance made more than 40 recommendations on how agriculture can help mitigate climate change and the new groups will focus on developing a set of more-specific policy proposals. The eight founding member organizations […]

House Ag Leadership Discusses Agreements, Differences

COVID vaccine distribution, rural broadband, climate change, and racial equity were among the top issues House Ag leaders laid before USDA’s 97th Ag Outlook Forum last week. From his roots growing up on his grandfather’s farm, House Ag Chair David Scott described the plight of America’s black farmers through generations of discrimination and earlier slavery […]

Biden Immigration Bill Introduced in Congress

Immigration legislation supported by President Biden has made its way to Congress. Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey and Representative Linda Sanchez of California, both Democrats, introduced Biden’s immigration proposal into their respective chambers. The Hagstrom Report says both members of Congress say the bill will “create an earned pathway to citizenship for all 11 […]

Newhouse: Rejoining Paris Climate Agreement Will Hurt Rural America

On Friday, the United States officially rejoined the Paris Climate Agreement. This came after President Biden signed an Executive Order on his first day in office to reenter the Agreement. Late last week, Dan Newhouse, chairman of the Congressional Western Caucus said the Paris Agreement was a bad deal then and it’s a bad deal […]

EPA Commits to Strengthening Science Used in Chemical Risk Evaluations

Earlier this week, the EPA announced the agency will refine its approach to selecting science used in chemical risk evaluations. Specifically, the agency will revamp its selection and review of scientific studies used to inform Toxic Substances Control Act chemical risk evaluations. The effort, the EPA says, is part of the agency’s effort in continuing […]

Senates Sets Vote for Vilsack Confirmation

The Senate will vote whether or not to confirm Tom Vilsack as Agriculture Secretary next week. The exact time is uncertain, but the Senate calendar has the vote planned for Tuesday, February 23rd. The Senate will debate the nomination for 20 minutes before voting, with the majority and minority parties receiving equal time. Ag experts […]

USDA Announces Monica Rainge as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights

On Tuesday, the USDA announced Monica Armster Rainge as deputy assistant secretary for civil rights. Rainge is an agricultural lawyer and mediator. She has worked in the public and private agricultural sectors for more than 25 years. She recently served as the Director of Land Retention and Advocacy for the Federation of Southern Cooperatives-Land Assistance […]