Farm bill could help farmers, soil health and water quality

Print Article

Do you care about soil health, clean water, and farmers’ ability to make a living and steward their land? Time to tune in. Congress has started work on the next farm bill, and now is when they need to hear from you: the voters.

The next farm bill offers a major opportunity to support conservation through the crop insurance program. Crop insurance is a must-have for most farmers. Linking crop insurance to conservation is therefore a smart way for Congress to invest taxpayer dollars in supporting farmers and strengthening stewardship of natural resources.

However, many farmers may be hesitant to use conservation practices due to confusing crop insurance regulations. They may ask, “Does planting cover crops impact eligibility?” Congress could eliminate this barrier by making clear that all conservation activities count as good farming practices under crop insurance.

The farm bill could also strengthen the tie between farmers’ conservation practices and their eligibility for crop insurance subsidies. Congress already passed a measure requiring farmers with highly erodible land or wetlands to meet a conservation threshold in order to receive crop insurance subsidies. It makes sense to expand this and offer a higher crop insurance subsidy to all farmers who practice conservation. These individuals are preserving the land for future generations.

Whether you are a farmer or not, everyone has three representatives in Congress: two senators and one congressperson. All three will eventually vote on a farm bill. Let your lawmakers know today that conservation is important to you.

Johnson represents the Center for Rural Affairs, a private, nonprofit organization working to strengthen small businesses, family farms and ranches, and rural communities through action oriented programs addressing social, economic, and environmental issues.

Print Article

Read More Editorial

Winter is here (or very close)

December 13, 2017 at 6:00 am | Priest River Times Mother Nature gave us all a good scare in early November with nearly a foot of early season snow. I think we all thought, for good or bad, the snow season was here to stay. As we started discussing...

Comments

Read More

What is socialism but communism undercover?

December 13, 2017 at 6:00 am | Bonner County Daily Bee “What is socialism but communism undercover?” says Margarete. She is a German survivor who lived through Hitler’s rise and fall. As a young girl, she witnessed her father’s torture and death because...

Comments

Read More

Prosper or harm: HiTest Silicon in Pend Oreille County

December 06, 2017 at 6:00 am | Bonner County Daily Bee Hopes and worries have caused an emotionally charged situation around the possibility of HiTest Silicon building in Pend Oreille County. Property south of Newport, WA has been purchased by a Canadi...

Comments

Read More

Kalispel Tribe opposing silicon smelter

November 29, 2017 at 6:00 am | Bonner County Daily Bee On Monday, the Kalispel Tribe’s governing council unanimously passed a resolution opposing the HiTest silicon smelter. We took this sovereign action because it is necessary to protect the health, cul...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(208) 448-2431
P.O. Box 159
310 Church Street
Sandpoint Idaho 83864

©2017 Priest River Times Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X