Chairman Frank Lucas wrapped up the House Agriculture Committee's field hearing series in Dodge City, Kansas. It was the final hearing that was held across the country to listen directly to producers on the ground and gather input in advance of writing the 2012 Farm Bill. Members heard from producers of a variety of commodities and beef about the tools they need to continue to produce a safe and affordable food and fiber supply. Witnesses explained that one of the goals of the Farm Bill should be to provide opportunities for effective risk management for all of agriculture.
“Field hearings are a vital part of the Farm Bill process and I appreciate the participation of all our witnesses. There are some challenges that vary by region, and we need to tailor farm policy to fit those unique requirements. We also need to be mindful that farmers and ranchers across the country share many of the same experiences, especially as they relate to regulatory burdens. I look forward to continuing the Farm Bill process as we prepare to write legislation,"said Chairman Frank Lucas (R-OK).
“As a freshman Congressman, it was truly a privilege to have the opportunity to showcase my district for members of the House Agriculture Committee. It was an honor that Dodge City in Kansas’ Big First was chosen as one of only four towns across the country to host a farm bill field hearing. As the witnesses explained today, agriculture is one of the few bright spots in America’s economy and yet still has room to grow. However, agricultural prosperity faces dangers that are both real and present. Overregulation from Washington directly threatens not only the continuity of our family farms, but also the existence of our way of life in rural America. Our farmers need to be freed from the regulatory grips of eager bureaucrats,”said Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS).
Next week, the House Agriculture Committee will continue the Farm Bill process by beginning another series of hearings on the Subcommittee level to gather input from national agricultural leaders and stakeholders.
Written testimony provided by the witnesses is linked below.
Mr. Gary Harshberger, corn, wheat, milo, soybean, and cow calf producer, Dodge City, Kansas
Mr. Keith Miller, wheat, sorghum, corn, soybean, and cow calf producer, Great Bend, Kansas
Mr. Dee Vaughan, corn, cotton, sorghum, soybean, and wheat producer, Dumas, Texas
Mr. Scott Neufeld, wheat, sorghum, canola, alfalfa, and cow calf producer, Fairview, Oklahoma
Mr. Terry Swanson, corn, wheat, sorghum, sunflower, and cow calf producer, Walsh, Colorado
Mr. Frank Harper, corn, soybean, wheat, sorghum, cow calf producer, Sedgewick, Kansas
Mr. Kendall Hodgson, wheat, soybean, corn, sorghum, alfalfa, and cow calf producer, Little River, Kansas
Mr. Tom Giessel, wheat, corn, sorghum, soybean, alfalfa, and cow calf producer, Larned, Kansas
Mr. Woody Anderson, cotton and wheat producer, Colorado City, Texas
Mr. Zach Hunnicutt, corn, soybean, and popcorn producer, Aurora, Nebraska
Schedule for future Farm Bill hearings:
- Wednesday, April 25, 2012 – 2:30 p.m. 1300 Longworth House Office Building Washington, D.C. Subcommittee on Rural Development, Research, Biotechnology, and Foreign Agriculture RE: Formulation of the 2012 Farm Bill: Rural Development Programs
- Thursday, April 26, 2012 – 9:30 a.m. 1300 Longworth House Office Building Washington, D.C. Subcommittee on Conservation, Energy, and Forestry RE: Formulation of the 2012 Farm Bill: Conservation Programs
- Thursday, April 26, 2012 – 2:00 p.m. 1300 Longworth House Office Building Washington, D.C. Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry RE: Formulation of the 2012 Farm Bill: Dairy Programs