The Midwestern Legislative Conference Agriculture & Natural Resources Committee provides a forum for state and provincial legislators to exchange information and ideas on agriculture policy at all levels of government. The committee represents state government on key regional and national issues, promotes the importance
of agriculture to the U.S. economy and society, and guides MLC projects related to agriculture and other policy issues impacting the rural Midwest.
The committee will next meet
on July 13 and 14 in St. Paul, Minn., as part of the MLC
Annual Meeting. On July 13, committee members, their guests and interested others will have the chance to tour agricultural sites around the Twin Cities. Pre-registration is required; please contact Carolyn Orr for more information.
On July 14, a series of policy sessions will be held exploring issues such as the future of federal agriculture policy, invasive species, the importance of agricultural research, and the impact of biofuels on the Midwest's economy and environment.
CSG regional offices hosting informational calls on farm bill; first call set for May 29
The MLC Agriculture & Natural Resources Committee — in conjunction with other regional agriculture committees and offices of The Council of State Governments as well as State Ag and Rural Leaders — is hosting a series of conference calls on the farm bill. The first call will be held at 11 a.m. EDT/10 a.m. CDT on Wednesday, May 29.
The calls will be held during a critical period for federal agriculture policy. The agriculture committees in both chambers of U.S. Congress have approved different versions of a new farm bill. The current farm bill was extended last fall after efforts to pass the legislation stalled in the House; at that time, a deadline of Sept. 30 was set for renewal.
The proposals in each chamber cut billions of dollars in spending, mostly from nutrition programs, which account for 80 percent of expenditures in the bill. The bills also end direct payments to farmers, replacing these with expanded risk-management support, but they differ in a number of ways on the extent and nature of the farm safety net.
In collaboration with agriculture groups from other regional CSG offices, this committee produces Ag Clips, a weekly electronic newsletter that provides updates on regional, national and international issues of importance to Midwestern policymakers. To view the current Ag Clips, click here. Subscriptions are free, and members are encouraged to submit articles for inclusion. Please contact Carolyn Orr to receive Ag Clips.
For more information about the MLC Agriculture & Natural Resources Committee, contact Carolyn Orr.
Other committee resources
MLC staff conducts in-depth research based on input and requests from legislators; for example, it has compiled state-by-state and federal information on issues such as farmland taxation, animal disease traceability and the farm bill. Please contact Carolyn Orr, the committee's CSG Midwest staff liaison, for research assistance.
The bipartisan MLC committees are made up of state and provincial legislators from across the Midwest. They foster the regional exchange of information and ideas on key policy issues impacting the region and its states. They also facilitate interstate cooperation.