The legislation that governs farm policies, nutrition programs and rural development, known as the Farm Bill, is set to expire in September.
U.S. Senator Pat Roberts of Kansas is leading the effort to get a new Farm Bill passed, and he received support this week from President Donald Trump.
Roberts was with the president at a farm convention this week in Tennessee as Trump promised there would be progress on a Farm Bill. The president also delivered his first public statement in support of crop insurance, which provides a safety net for farmers when natural disasters strike or commodity prices decline.
"I’m looking forward to working with Congress to pass the Farm Bill on time, so that it delivers for all of you, and I support a bill that includes crop insurance," Trump said.
The president had cut crop insurance in his budget last spring but later rescinded the cut.
Roberts met with the president several times during the past year to discuss the Farm Bill and other issues facing farmers and ranchers.
Trump also supports rolling back the Environmental Protection Agency’s Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule, which affects farmers and ranchers.
The WOTUS rule was developed by the Obama Administration’s EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It greatly expanded the EPA’s federal jurisdiction and the scope of bodies of water subject to Clean Water Act requirements.
Following the president’s speech at the American Farm Bureau’s convention in Nashville, Roberts, who chairs the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, said in a statement:
“Farmers and ranchers are the lifeblood of our rural communities and backbone of our country It’s refreshing to see a President take such personal interest in the rural American constituency.
"President Trump has listened to my concerns on numerous occasions, as evidenced by today’s speech, and those concerns have certainly not fallen on deaf ears. I look forward to working with President Trump as we write the upcoming Farm Bill.”
Follow Deborah Shaar on Twitter @deborahshaar.
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