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Policy Plate BLOG

Your daily serving of food and farm policy.

The Latest from Policy Plate

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

A bipartisan measure introduced today by Reps. Mike Thompson, D-Calif., and Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., would restore the agreement between farmers and taxpayers that has protected soil, water and wetlands and grasslands since 1985. 

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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The CATO Institute released a blog today that reiterates how hypocritical the statements made by Rep. Stephen Fincher (R-Tenn.) were during the House Agriculture Committee’s markup of the farm bill.  

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Monday, June 3, 2013

Environmental Working Group¹s 2013 update of its Farm Subsidy Database shows that 15 members of Congress or their spouses benefitted from a total of $237,921 in taxpayer-funded farm subsidy payments last year.

To see which lawmakers are receiving subsidies, click here.

See news coverage:

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Thursday, May 23, 2013

The New York Times has used data from EWG’s farm subsidy database to shed more light on Rep. Stephen Fincher’s (R-Tenn.) hypocritical defense of the $20 billion cuts to SNAP in the House farm bill.

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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

EWG’s 2013 Farm Subsidy Database, launched today, documents that free-spending federal crop insurance subsidies are badly in need of reform.

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Monday, May 20, 2013

Common-sense amendments to place reasonable limits on how much premium subsidy a farm operator can receive will strengthen the program while still providing farmers with a generous safety net. 

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Friday, May 17, 2013

The budget-busting farm bill approved Wednesday night by the House Agriculture Committee and its leaders – Reps. Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) and Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) – is nothing but bad news for the environment. 

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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Rep. Stephen Fincher (R-Tenn.) invoked the bible in support of a $20 billion cut to feeding assistance programs. 

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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The House Agriculture Committee started the markup of their farm bill this morning and much of the debate focused on needless cuts to SNAP.  

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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Today the Senate Agriculture Committee approved the farm bill with a vote of 15 to 5.

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Monday, May 13, 2013

Two out of every five farmers who seek federal help in reducing water pollution from their fields or the amount of pesticides and antibiotics they use are being turned away because U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service lacks sufficient funding.

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Friday, May 10, 2013

The farm bill drafts proposed by both House and Senate Agriculture committees this week would cut funding for the hungry and the environment by boosting subsidies for the largest and most successful farm businesses.

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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) and Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) today introduced conservation legislation that recognizes our food, farms and families are all worth protecting.  The Balancing Food, Farm and Environment Act would fully fund and reform USDA conservation programs.  In particular, H.R. 1890:

·      Reforms EQIP to reduce the use of antibiotics and pesticides

·      Reforms CRP to provide long-term protection of wetlands, prairie and other habitat

·      Requires farmers who receive crop insurance subsidies to adopt basic environmental protections

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Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Today, Environmental Working Group (EWG) released a new analysis that underscores the need to reform the nation’s primary land restoration program for long-term protection of wetlands, prairies and other lands that protect drinking water and wildlife habitat.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Environmental Working Group (EWG) today launched the Worth Protecting social media and advocacy campaign to underscore the need for federal farm bill reforms that protect public health and the environment and support future generations of family farmers. 

Monday, May 6, 2013

As Congress gets ready to mark up the federal farm bill, chef Tom Colicchio and EWG will launch the “Worth Protecting” initiative tomorrow (May 7) to push lawmakers for serious reforms.

Friday, December 21, 2012

House Speaker John Boehner made the right choice when he refused to include a trillion-dollar farm bill in legislation designed to avert the “fiscal cliff.”

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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

POLITICO reports House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio wants to push the farm bill to next year and not include it any fiscal cliff deal.

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Thursday, December 13, 2012

Both the Senate and House versions of the farm bill include $6 billion in cuts to conservation programs. Should a new version emerge from the fiscal cliff negotiations, these misguided cuts are sure to be part of the deal.

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Thursday, December 13, 2012

Conservation experts and Iowa state officials continue to weigh in on EWG’s Murky Waters report. The analysis underscores the most serious flaw of the federal Clean Water Act: it does little or nothing to address agricultural pollution.

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