House Ag Working on 2018 Farm Bill


The House Agriculture Committee is drafting the next farm bill and could bring the bill for consideration by the full House of Representatives yet this year. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway commented last week on the timeframe of getting the 2018 Farm Bill through the House and Senate.

Conaway says the Committee and staff are putting “pencil to paper now” on drafting the next farm bill, including the nutrition title…

“We’ll have that done over the next several weeks.  And in my conversation with the leader, if I can show him a path forward to 218 votes, he’ll put us on the floor sometime in November, December, January kind of time frame.”          

He says the Senate is considering a similar timeframe…

“I know Pat Roberts is doing a very similar time frame, but I think we’re further along than they are.  As soon as we can show we have the votes, I think the leader will put us on the floor, and we’ll back up from that by several days to run it through committee, then move forward.”                

Conaway visited Canada over the weekend to talk agriculture in the North American Free Trade Agreement, and to urge Canada to take the negotiations seriously, while working quickly to finish the effort.

Speaking of NAFTA negotiations, they get underway again today in Washington.  American Farm Bureau trade adviser Dave Salmonsen says the pace of talks and discussion of more sensitive issues is heightening tensions as the three-NAFTA partners try to score so-far, elusive gains…

“Now, it’s looking into some of the ag issues, and some of the related dairy issues, we don’t know if they’ve been talked about much yet, I’m sure they’ve been discussed, but will they come to the forefront?  Usually issues with ag and dairy get dealt with towards the end.”                       

U.S. produce growers are also seeking anti-dumping protections against Mexican tomatoes.

A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.