EPA Announces Intent to Revise Definition of WOTUS

The EPA plans to repeal and rewrite the definition of water of the United States, or WOTUS. The EPA announced Wednesday it will repeal the Trump-era Navigable Waters Protection Rule, which replaced the Obama-era Waters of the U.S. rule. EPA Administrator Michael Regan states, “the EPA and Department of the Army have determined that this […]

Regan: EPA Won’t Return to Obama-era WOTUS Definitions

EPA Administrator Michael Regan told lawmakers Wednesday the agency would not go back to the Obama-era definitions of Waters of the U.S. Regan made the comments as part of the 2022 Budget Request for EPA during a House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing. Regan told lawmakers, “We don’t have any intention of going back to the original […]

Vilsack Wants To Bring Back “Strike Force”

During his time as Ag Secretary during the Obama Administration, Tom Vilsack created a program of focused economic help, “for communities that have been dealing with persistent poverty for far too long”. Vilsack called the effort, “Strike Force.”  Now that he’s leading the USDA again, “we propose the re-establishment of the “Strike Force,” designed to […]

Salmonsen: U.S. Has Already Missed Out On Current TPA

The deadline for the U.S. to negotiate bilateral trade deals with the U.K. and Kenya under rules for streamlined Congressional approval has expired. Technically, current Trade Promotion Authority allowing up-or-down votes on trade deals with no amendments, expires June 30th. But American Farm Bureau trade advisor Dave Salmonsen said the actual deadline has already come […]

Will The U.S. & Cuba Normalize Trade Relations

On January 3rd, 1961 President Eisenhower’s Press Secretary, James Haggerty, announced that the U.S. was severing diplomatic relations with Cuba. That was followed by a trade embargo and the closing of the U.S. Embassy on the island nation. 54 years later, the Obama Administration announced and effort to normalize relations. However, that effort was changed […]

Bentz Calls On Administration To Revise Spotted Owl Habitat

On Wednesday, Oregon’s Cliff Bentz crafted a letter, signed by nine members of the House, asking the Department of the Interior to implement a federal rule pushed in January revising the designation of the critical habitat of the Northern Spotted Owl (NSO). If implemented, Bentz says the 2021 rule would better allow federal agencies to […]

Vilsack: SNAP Benefits Economy, As Well As Those In Need

Ag Secretary, Tom Vilsack, recently noted the impact of SNAP, is more than just helping to feed people. “For every dollar that we spend in SNAP, we generate economic activity” Vilsack compared the numbers to figures from when he served as USDA head during the Obama Administration. “Way back when, when I was Secretary, it […]

USDA Announces Oscar Gonzales as Assistant Secretary for Administration

The Department of Agriculture this week announced the appointment of Oscar Gonzales as Assistant Secretary for administration. Gonzales, nominated by President Biden, previously served in the Obama administration in several senior positions with USDA, including Deputy Assistant Secretary for administration. He also served as the California State Executive Director for USDA’s Farm Service Agency, where […]

Farm Futures: Why Farmers Feel Threatened by Biden Administration

According to a recent Farm Futures survey, farmers feel threatened by potential policy objectives under the Biden administration. The survey shows nearly nine out of ten farmers believe taxes will go up under the current administration. Another 71% believe WOTUS will be overturned. Only 22% believe markets will stabilize with a new trade strategy. And […]

Democratic Lawmakers Seek End to Cuba Embargo

Last week, Senate Democrats introduced a bill to end the U.S. embargo on Cuba. Senate Finance Committee Chair, Oregon’s Ron Wyden introduced the U.S.-Cuba Trade Act of 2021 to repeal sanctions on Cuba and establish normal trade relations with the island nation. Wyden stated, “To continue this outdated, harmful policy of isolation would be a […]