Wednesday, June 10, 2015

House Passes Three Agriculturally Related Bills

  On June 9, 2015, the United States House of Representatives passed by voice vote three agriculturally related bills: H.R. 2051 Mandatory Price Reporting Act, H.R. 2088 United States Grain Standards Reauthorization Act, and H.R. 2394 National Forest Foundation Reauthorization Act.  The bills were reauthorizations which the House Agriculture Committee Chairman, Michael Conaway (R-TX), wanted passed before the bills expired.  The bills still need to be presented and passed by the Senate.

  In a statement on Tuesday, Conaway commented, “As Chairman, my first goal was to have all reauthorizations taken care of before the deadlines passed, and that’s what we accomplished today. In fact, this completes our work in cleaning up the books of the House Agriculture Committee, addressing every item on the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) list of unauthorized appropriations under the Committee’s jurisdiction.”  He further stated the Acts are essential for farmers and ranchers to continue having necessary resources to carry out operations.

  House Bill, 2051 Mandatory Price Reporting Act, would reauthorize the Livestock Mandatory Price Reporting Act of 1999, which was set to expire on Sept. 30, 2015.  According to the House Committee on Agriculture website, the Act mandated “price reporting for live cattle, boxed beef, and live swine” as well as “allowed United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to establish mandatory price reporting for lamb sales.”  The Act was originally created in response to changing markets and the lack of reporting sale prices as larger volumes of animals were being sold via marketing arrangements.  The price reporting mechanism that was previously voluntary became mandatory with the enactment of the 1999 legislation, the goal being to facilitate price transparency.  

  House Bill, 2088 United States Grain Standards Act, would reauthorize the United States Grain Standards Act of 1916.  According to the House Committee on Agriculture website, the Act gives “the federal government authorization to establish official marketing standards for grains and oilseeds and provided procedures for grain inspection and weighing.”

Written by Katharine Richter- Research Assistant

June 10, 2015

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