House Agriculture Committee Ranking Member Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., and Rep. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., along with 22 co-sponsors introduced a bill Thursday to extend current farm policy for one year to provide stability for America’s farmers and ranchers as they begin planting their 2008 crops. Moran says it’s simply unacceptable that the end of the year is approaching without a farm bill.
"Until now I've never thought an extension of the Farm Bill was the right course of action, and while I remain interested in passing a new farm bill, we should extend the current one for another year," Moran says. "This brings some certainty to farm policy and should we approve a farm bill in the next several months, it would give USDA time to implement that new bill."
The 2002 farm bill officially expired on Sept. 30, but has been kept alive by temporary extensions. Moran says it’s next to impossible to think Congress can complete the bill before the end of the year. The Senate isn’t expected to consider the farm bill until December at the earliest, and once the Senate approves it, House and Senate leaders will still have to work out the differences in the two versions.