Subcommittee Holds Field Hearings to Further Farm Bill Process
(May 16, 2001)
General Farm Commodities Subcommittee Chairman Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) has announced a series of field hearings to provide producers from around the country an opportunity to discuss in depth how individual farm programs affect them. Expanding on last year's groundbreaking series of full committee hearings in rural communities, the General Farm Commodities Subcommittee hearings in June will explore the structure of loan rates, aspects of continuing the current transition payments, the trigger mechanisms for counter-cyclical income support, as well as other farm bill components. The subcommittee hearings will conclude with a session in Macon, Georgia on June 23.
"I want producers to comment on the proposed farm programs and how those issues related to the commodity programs hinder them from operating in the most efficient manner. It will be beneficial for members of the Subcommittee to hear from farmers on how we can improve on proposals and existing programs as we move to complete the reauthorization of the farm bill in Chairman Combest's timeframe," Chambliss explained. "There are a lot of farmers out there who spend an awful lot of time on tractors thinking about how Washington could tinker with programs to make them better."
The full Agriculture Committee has been setting the stage for the new farm bill for the last two years, beginning with a series of field hearings on general farm policy, followed by a comprehensive look at farm policy proposals from fifteen commodity groups.
Chairman Larry Combest (R-TX), discussing the field hearings said, "These hearings will be an important part of the Committee's work as we complete the farm bill. As subcommittee members bring their impressions back to the full Committee, they will have a great deal of valuable information that will be helpful to us as we complete the farm bill this year."
Chairman Combest anticipates writing an entire farm bill by early August, to make the comprehensive agricultural legislation available for House consideration in September.
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