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Congressman Pomeroy says 2002 farm bill needs more work

By Tracy Fugere

Fargo, ND – Congressman Earl Pomeroy says the 2002 farm bill needs more work.

Pomeroy says in advancing this bill and committing resources to pricesupport--the House made a major step forward in improving farm policy. Hesays it's now up to the Senate to improve the House bill and that can bedone.

Pomeroy says the House establishes it's price support through a verycomplicated mechanism that continues to divorce payments from the activityactually occurring in farming. He believes that if public support is keptbehind tax-payer dollars going to farmers--the bill has to make sense.

("And so a proposal like the House one that has three different types of funding streams coming in--1-no matter what happens you get a payment based on historical planting. 2-You get a market loan but the market loan doesn't reflect cost of production or anything other than the continuation of the existing market loan which didn't make much sense. 3-A top off depending on where market price falls except you only get it on 85 percent of your acreage. And, add to all of that, the fact that it's not sufficiently targeted so under that crazy formula, you can have vast sums of money going into an individual entity and you got a bill that needs more work. It needs more work.")

Pomeroy spoke at the N-D-S-U Conference on the 2002 farm bill. Pomeroyaddressed the timeliness of the conference and said how important it was toshow consensus in ag-country for a farm bill that delivers price support.