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Opening Statements

Opening Statement: Chairman K. Michael Conaway: Committee on Agriculture Business Meeting: To consider H.R. 470, H.R. 845, and H.R. 5883

Remarks as prepared for delivery:

Thank you all for being here today as we consider three straightforward bills. H.R. 470, the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest Land Adjustment Act, transfers Forest Service lands in Northeast Georgia.  The transfer will help boost the area’s economy through improving recreational activities on the land. 

H.R. 5883 amends the Packers and Stockyards Act which was enacted in 1921 to protect buyers and sellers of livestock from unfair, deceptive, and discriminatory practices. The Act has not been thoroughly revised in decades, resulting in various outdated requirements.  This bill updates definitions to clarify that PSA provisions apply to online and video auctions.  It also updates the acceptable payment methods to include electronic transfer of funds. 

Finally, H.R. 845, the National Forest Trails Stewardship Act, addresses the $500 million backlog in trail maintenance the Forest Service faces by requiring the Forest Service to develop a national strategy to maximize the use of volunteers and partners. 

Given the short amount of time we have to markup these pieces of legislation, I am going to move right into the first bill.  

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