Policy & Politics

Motor Carrier Weight Threshold Rules Revised

Published Dec. 17, 2010

The Public Utilities Commission (PUCO) has revised its rules relative to motor carrier transportation safety. These revised rules now extend PUCO jurisdiction to regulate vehicle safety to vehicles with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) of 10,001 to 26,000 pounds that are operating...

Bob Gibbs to serve on agriculture, transportation committees

Published Dec. 17, 2010

U.S. Rep.-elect Bob Gibbs, R-Lakeville, will sit on the Agriculture Committee and the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee in the House of Representatives next year. The Agriculture Committee has jurisdiction over renewable energy, conservation, animal and plant health and agricultural research and development.

Farm Bureau praises House passage of tax relief legislation

Published Dec. 17, 2010

The House voted 277-148 late Thursday night to approve the $859 billion bill that extends the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for two years and sets the estate tax at 35 percent with a $5 million exemption through 2012. The legislation, which passed the Senate by a vote of 81-19 on Wednesday, now goes...

10 Percent Cut in Farm Supports Part of Commission Plan

Published Dec. 17, 2010

On Wednesday, a 10 percent cut in farm support programs was proposed by an 18-member bipartisan commission intent on balancing the federal budget. A vote by the commission on the overall plan, which encompasses the entire federal government, is expected Friday.

ODA to Accept Aquaculture Grant Applications

Published Dec. 30, 2010

REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio (Dec. 30, 2010) – Ohio’s fish farmers can now apply for their portion of $34,859 in reimbursements through the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s Aquaculture Grant Program. The program will assist producers who suffered financial losses associated with high feed costs in 2009.

Vineyard Expansion Assistance Program Provides Grant Money to Ohio Grape Growers

Published Jan. 6, 2011

REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio (Jan. 6, 2010) – Thirty Ohio grape growers will soon receive $2,000 grants provided by the Vineyard Expansion Assistance Program. Ohio vineyards will receive these grants funded by the Ohio Department of Agriculture through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Specialty Block...

Clean Ohio Ag Easement Purchase Program's 2011 Application Period Opens

Published Jan. 6, 2011

REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio (Jan. 6, 2011) – The 2011 Clean Ohio Agricultural Easement Purchase Program application is now available on the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s website. All applications must be submitted electronically no later than 5 p.m. on April 6, 2011.

ODA Director Zehringer Appoints Top Administrators

Published Jan. 13, 2011

Ohio Department of Agriculture Director James Zehringer today announced several new appointments to the department’s senior management team: Frederick M. Shimp, assistant director; Rocky Black, deputy director; Andy Ware, communications director; Thomas A. Johnston, chief financial officer...

President Obama Recently Signed Food Safety Bill

Published Jan. 17, 2011

President Barack Obama recently signed a $1.4 billion food safety bill that sets the biggest change to oversight of the food industry since 1938 and gives the Food and Drug Administration more regulatory authority. However, Republicans are sending signals of a funding fight for the new regulations.

FAPRI: Farm Bill Cuts Would Make Tiny Dent in Deficit

Published Jan. 17, 2011

As discussion develops on writing a 2012 farm bill and reducing the federal budget deficit, there may be talk of cutting “farm subsidies.” But the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute at the University of Missouri points out that such cuts would make just a tiny dent...

PUCO schedules commercial motor carrier listening sessions

Published Jan. 31, 2011

Ohio’s motor carrier community is invited to provide the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) with testimony regarding new safety rules that apply to private intrastate commercial motor vehicles. The PUCO will host five listening sessions to learn from small carriers about the operational...

Farm Bureau welcomes USDA biotech decision

Published Jan. 31, 2011

Farm Bureau is pleased by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack’s announcement that the Agriculture Department will fully deregulate Roundup Ready alfalfa, American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman said.

Senators express concerns about crop insurance

Published Jan. 31, 2011

On Thursday, a bipartisan group of senators sent a letter to Vilsack that commended USDA for proposing a Good Performance Refund program aimed at strengthening the federal crop insurance program.

Stabenow officially announced as Senate Ag Chair

Published Jan. 31, 2011

After being formally appointed yesterday to serve as chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) said she looks forward to leading the committee and emphasized her belief that “agriculture is critical to our economy and is helping to lead our recovery.”

Urgent Action Alert: Help End Ohio's Estate Tax

Published Jan. 31, 2011

Help End Ohio's Estate Tax by Calling or E-mailing your State Representative and State Senator. On average, 84 percent of farm assets are real-estate based. Burdensome estate taxes can cause the loss or break-up of family farms when heirs are forced to sell assets to pay the tax...

2011 State Legislative Priorities

Published Feb. 22, 2011

Eliminating Ohio's Estate Tax, ensuring a sound business climate and low tax burden, addressing Ohio's state budget, transportation, energy, and environmental issues are among the top state legislative priorities for Ohio Farm Bureau in 2011.

2011 Federal Legislative Priorities

Published Feb. 22, 2011

Maintaining a strong safety net for farmers, establishing a new direction for dairy policy, growing agricultural trade opportunities, regulatory oversight and reducing additional regulatory burdens, tax policy, food quality and safety, and energy and transportation issues are our top priorities.

Update on Efforts to Repeal the Ohio Estate Tax

Published Mar. 15, 2011

HB 3 (Grossman, Hottinger) & SB 90 (Jordan) – Repeal the Estate Tax HB 3 is an OFBF priority bill. HB 3 passed the House Ways and Means Committee on Feb. 16. At this time, the bill has not been scheduled for a vote before the full House of Representatives. Sources within the House...

Update on HB 22 - Animals at Large Bill

Published Mar. 15, 2011

HB 22 (Bubp) - Animals at Large HB 22, which is an OFBF priority issue for 2011, will clarify Ohio law by establishing clear standards for civil and criminal liability and will ensure that farmers whose animals escape fences and buildings through no fault of the owner (natural disasters,....

HB 89 - Ohio Agriculture Week Signed into Law

Published Mar. 15, 2011

HB 89 (Derickson) – Agriculture Week HB 89 passed both Chambers with unanimous support and was signed into law by Governor Kasich on March 11th. HB 89 designates the second full week of March as Ohio Agriculture Week to honor the state's agriculture community.

Several OFBF Priority Issues Included in HB 114 - Transportation Budget Bill

Published Mar. 15, 2011

HB 114 (McGregor) – Transportation Budget Bill HB 114 recently passed the Ohio House and is now being heard in the Ohio Senate. It is the legislation that funds Ohio’s Department of Transportation, Public Safety, and other projects related to transportation and infrastructure in Ohio...

Staff Testimony on Growing Ohio's Agricultural Economy

Published Apr. 15, 2011

OFBF Director of State Policy Beth Vanderkooi testified before the Ohio House of Representatives Economic and Small Business Development Committee about the importance of growing Ohio's agricultural economy.

Staff Testimony in Support of HB 22

Published Apr. 15, 2011

OFBF Director of State Policy Beth Vanderkooi testified before the Ohio Senate Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Environment Committee in support of House Bill 22 regarding changes to Ohio's Animals at Large Law.

Staff Testimony in Support of SB 90 to Eliminate the Ohio Estate Tax

Published Apr. 15, 2011

OFBF Director of State Policy Beth Vanderkooi testified before the Senate Ways and Means and Economic Development Committee in support of Senate Bill 90 to eliminate the Ohio Estate Tax.

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Adam Sharp and Chris Henney share more about why Trade Matters in this video update.

Trade Matters - Take Action Now

Published May. 31, 2011

$3 Billion in Additional Exports, Economic Development and Jobs. That’s what is gained once the Korea, Panama and Colombia Free Trade Agreements are implemented. But while the Administration and Congress delay action, current American agricultural market share is being cut by other countries...