The farm bill approved by the Senate Ag Committee is headed for the Senate floor next month. In preparation – Politico is reporting that Senate Ag Chair Debbie Stabenow is reaching out to southern lawmakers in an effort to bridge the gap that split her committee last month and put her at odds with allies in the House. According to Politico – backroom talks are focused on putting a modest counter cyclical program together as a safety net for rice and peanuts.
One possibility would trigger assistance if prices fell below $10.50 per hundredweight for rice and 495-dollars per ton of peanuts. Those figures are well below what growers have been asking for – instead matching the indexes set in current law. Lawmakers in the House that are sympathetic with the South – Politico reports – are saying this potential deal must be considered as a bridge to a future House-Senate conference on the farm bill.