Today, Rep. K. Michael Conaway (R-TX), Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, issued the following statement regarding legislation introduced by Senator Hoeven (R-ND) and Senator Stabenow (D-MI) that ties repeal of country of origin labeling (COOL) to both the elimination of existing market driven programs and the establishment of a so-called voluntary country of origin (COOL) labeling program for beef, pork, and chicken. This new voluntary program would operate under similar rules as the program found to violate U.S. international trade rules.
Obama's Regulations No Laughing Matter for America's Farmers and Ranchers
Tamara Hinton, 202.225.0184
WASHINGTON – In his State of the Union Address last night, President Obama addressed criticisms of over-regulation by his administration. He claimed success for exempting dairy farmers from an Oil Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure (SPCC) program mandate that would have regulated milk the same way as oil:
“We got rid of one rule from 40 years ago that could have forced some dairy farmers to spend $10,000 a year proving that they could contain a spill – because milk was somehow classified as an oil. With a rule like that, I guess it was worth crying over spilled milk.”
The truth is that the Obama administration actually withdrew the Bush administration's proposal to exempt dairy farmers from oil spill regulations, and then delayed their decision on this exemption for nearly two years.
In contrast, House Republicans responded to dairy farmers’ concerns and introduced legislation to force the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to finalize the dairy exemption.
Meanwhile, the president made no mention of other equally preposterous regulations that our farmers and ranchers still face.
The president claims that he’s working to reduce unnecessary regulations, but only the House has actually taken action.
Until the Senate takes up H.R. 872, businesses across the country are facing a redundant permitting requirement for the use of already-regulated pesticides. The Senate is also delaying action on H.R. 1633, which ensures that the EPA does not maintain the authority to regulate rural dust.
If the President is serious about eliminating regulations, it’s time to act.