Farm Bill

Final Subcommittee Assignments for Senate Agriculture Committee Announced

April 8, 2011

Chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, Senator Debbie Stabenow, and Ranking Member, Senator Pat Roberts, announced assignments for the Committee’s five subcommittees for the 112th Congress this week. A list of the Chair and Ranking Member for each subcommittee follows: Subcommittee on Commodities, Markets, Trade and Risk Management Chairman: Bill Nelson […]

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service Leadership Testifies at House Appropriations Hearing

April 6, 2011

On Tuesday, April 5, Harris Sherman, USDA Undersecretary of Natural Resources and Environment, and Dave White, Chief of the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), testified before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration and Related Agencies. The hearing focused on the President’s fiscal year (FY) 2012 budget, which proposes deep […]

Guest Post: LSP Letter to USDA on Conservation

April 6, 2011

Mark Schultz, the Policy and Organizing Director for Minnesota-based Land Stewardship Project, an NSAC member organization, recently sent the following letter to USDA Secretary Vilsack in response to the Obama Administration’s proposal to Congress to slash federal farm conservation program spending.  The letter was subsequently posted on the LSP website, and we reprint it here […]

FY 11 Appropriation Bill Remains Stalled as Deadline Approaches

April 5, 2011

Despite meetings at the White House this morning and back on Capitol Hill this afternoon, the principals in the negotiations over the Continuing Resolution to fund the government for the last 6 months of fiscal year (FY) 2011 remain stalled.  By all accounts, a meeting at the White House this morning with Hill leaders made […]

Farm Bill Debate Starts with 2011 Funding Bill

April 1, 2011

While most commentaries on the 2012 Farm Bill treat it, quite logically, as a coming attraction, in many key respects the battle is already joined.  Understanding why that is the case requires some insight into the strange world of congressional budgeting. The Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 appropriations bill that Congress and the Administration are trying […]

Farm Bill Over?

April 1, 2011

BREAKING: A Budget deal reached as soon as Monday will shape the future of farm conservation programs into the next decade! This is a critical moment. The White House and House Republican leadership are negotiating a budget deal that would effectively rewrite the next Farm Bill now by taking a huge bite out of Farm […]

You’ve Got Mail

March 25, 2011

Agriculture Secretary Vilsack’s inbox was brimming this week with letters from farmers and advocates for USDA Conservation Programs.   Hundreds responded to our action alert calling for letters to the Secretary asking him to stand up for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) and the Wetlands Reserve Program(WRP). As the Obama Administration negotiates with the House over […]

House Agriculture Sends Budget Letter

March 15, 2011

On Tuesday, March 15, the House Committee on Agriculture adopted a letter to the House Committee on the Budget containing recommendations for the fiscal year (FY) 2012 budget cycle.  The Agriculture Committee’s recommendations focus on (1) oversight of regulations affecting jobs and the economies of rural communities, and (2) preparations for the 2012 farm bill. […]

USDA to Hold Resource Conservation Act Report Round Tables

March 7, 2011

USDA is getting ready to submit to Congress a national appraisal of the status of soil, water, and related natural resources on non-Federal land.  The appraisal is part of USDA’s implementation of the Soil and Water Resources Conservation Act (RCA), which authorizes USDA to assess the status of the country’s natural resources, evaluate current policies […]

House Holds Two Hearings on Agriculture Appropriations

March 2, 2011

On Tuesday and Wednesday of this week, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies held two hearings with top officials at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). On Tuesday, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, along with Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan, Chief Economist Joe Glauber, and USDA Budget […]

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