What is in this article?:
- The House spent nearly two days debating the FY 2012 agricultural, rural development, Food and Drug Administration and related agencies funding bill.
- The House-approved measure cuts nearly $2 billion in conservation and renewable energy funding from the government spending plans for the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1.
- Advocates are turning their attention to the Senate to make changes in the measure.
Eliminate CC payments
One of those, an amendment offered by Rep. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., would have terminated counter-cyclical payments for upland cotton, prohibited repayment of cotton marketing assistance loans at the adjusted world price or issuance of loan deficiency payments for upland cotton and would have ended cotton storage payments.
“Fortunately, a blatant and inappropriate circumvention of the farm program development process was avoided with this amendment’s defeat,” said Parker, a cotton producer from Kennett, Mo. “It would have targeted cotton specifically and undermined a critical safety net for cotton farmers who face uncertain economic and weather climates and seriously jeopardized an industry that makes significant contributions to our nation’s economic well-being.”
Parker said the U.S. cotton industry and other ag sectors understand the gravity of the current budget situation but noted Congress went through a lengthy debate during 2008 farm bill development before imposing tighter eligibility requirements and establishing limitations on benefits.
NCC leaders said they were deeply disappointed that the House approved an amendment by Rep. Ron Kind, D-Wis., and Flake that would prohibit the transfer of funds to the Brazilian Cotton Institute.
The Kind-Flake amendment would result in the United States violating the Framework Agreement negotiated by the U.S. and Brazilian governments. The agreement allowed Brazil to withhold implementation of prohibitively high tariffs on U.S. exports and provided for a series of consultations that could lead to a resolution of the dispute.