Ag Chat with Bob Bosold -June 10
The first checks have been sent out for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program. Applications for the assistance started on May 26th and so far about 550 million of the $16 billion allocated for the program has been sent to producers around the country. At the end of last week Farm Service Agency officials said they had already received over 86,000 applications with 35,000 of those producers already getting checks. The top 5 states receiving those early payments are Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Farmers can apply for the aid until August 28th.
Legislators are trying to find more ways to help famers get through the Coronavirus pandemic without simply passing more money bills. A new bill just introduced by a bipartisan group of Northern Senators would allow emergency haying and grazing on Conservation Reserve Program acres during the pandemic. Currently such action is only taken during weather emergencies but the sponsors say this is a different kind of emergency. A companion bill has also been introduced in the House.
The farmer's share of the consumer food dollar in this country has gone up slightly. That total is now 14.6 cents of every dollar spent on food goes to the farmer-up from 14.4 cents a couple of years ago. That's the first time that amount has gone up in a decade.
About 48 livestock and natural resource groups are opposing a bill that would provide permanent funding and deal with the $21 billion in the maintenance backlog for our national parks and other federal land management areas. The new law, called the Great American Outdoor Act would create more than $14 billion in new, mandatory spending and would also give federal agencies free rein to spend $360 million a year to buy new private lands without any government oversight.
If there is a national FFA convention this fall, it have one fewer national officer to run the meeting. That's because Wets Region Vice President, Lyle Logeman, has been relieved of his duties. Logeman violated the FFA code of ethics by posting inappropriate diversity statements on social media-before he became a national officer. That leaves the group with 5 national officers.