News Briefs

Buckeye Farm News 

Labor dispute

American Farm Bureau has criticized the Department of Labor’s decision to suspend rules that went into effect in January that simplified processes for hiring foreign farm workers, saying it will now be easier for people without authorization to work in the United States. OFBF submitted comments urging the department to reverse the decision, noting that it did not provide the public reasonable opportunity to comment on the action.

IRS to provide data to USDA

After discovering nearly $50 million in crop subsidies being paid to ineligible farmers, the Internal Revenue Service will now provide data on farmers’ income to USDA to ensure that individuals and entities meet income limits set in the farm bill. Starting with the 2009 crop year, those seeking subsidies must authorize the IRS to share their income data with USDA.

AFBF: Antibiotics needed

American Farm Bureau is expressing opposition to legislation that would remove and restrict important antibiotics for veterinary and farm use. AFBF President Bob Stallman said the legislation would handicap veterinarians and livestock and poultry producers in their efforts to protect the nation’s food supply and maintain the health of their farm animals.

Farm subsidy battle goes on

Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, recently said he will not propose cuts in U.S. crop subsidies for fiscal year 2010. A letter from the committee said President Obama’s budget “recklessly dismantles the agreement of the 2008 Farm Bill.” Farm Bureau has expressed strong opposition to $16 billion in cuts to the farm safety net proposed in Obama’s 2010 budget.

Lynn Snyder 

Lynn Snyder is senior director of communications for Ohio Farm Bureau.

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