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107th CONGRESS
  1st Session
S. RES. 13

 Expressing the sense of the Senate regarding the need for Congress to 
  enact a new farm bill during the 1st session of the 107th Congress.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                            January 22, 2001

   Mr. Daschle (for himself, Mr. Harkin, Mr. Leahy, Mr. Johnson, Mr. 
  Baucus, Mr. Rockefeller, Mr. Kohl, Mr. Sarbanes, Mr. Wellstone, Mr. 
 Dorgan, Mr. Durbin, Mr. Conrad, Mr. Kerry, Mrs. Carnahan, Mr. Dayton, 
 Mr. Kennedy, Ms. Stabenow, Mr. Schumer, and Mr. Akaka) submitted the 
     following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on 
                  Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry

_______________________________________________________________________

                               RESOLUTION


 
 Expressing the sense of the Senate regarding the need for Congress to 
  enact a new farm bill during the 1st session of the 107th Congress.

Whereas in contrast to the economic prosperity enjoyed by Americans over the 
        past several years, many agriculture-dependent rural economies have 
        continued to experience serious economic hardship;
Whereas independently owned and operated farms and ranches that are integral to 
        the economic and social stability of rural America, but that are 
        relatively less able to withstand economic shock, have suffered 
        disproportionately during this period of ongoing economic distress;
Whereas the contract payments authorized by the Agricultural Market Transition 
        Act (7 U.S.C. 7201 et seq.) increasingly are considered by producers to 
        be inequitable because--
                    (1) the contract payments are not based on current 
                production, but are instead based on 85 percent of program 
                yields established in 1986 and frozen in 1990;
                    (2) the contract payments are provided to owners and 
                producers that may no longer be producing the crop on which the 
                contract payments are calculated;
                    (3) the contract payments are not available to producers of 
                nonprogram crops, including soybeans and other oilseeds, 
                resulting in further inequities and arbitrariness in making 
                emergency farm payments;
                    (4) the contract payments are not available to owners and 
                producers that did not enter into production flexibility 
                contracts under the Agricultural Market Transition Act; and
                    (5) the contract payments are made for crops regardless of 
                whether the crops are experiencing low prices;
Whereas despite being promoted as a means of limiting farm program spending, 
        current farm policy necessitated record levels of program spending and 
        emergency assistance packages;
Whereas the previous record of $26,000,000,000 in direct payments through the 
        Commodity Credit Corporation for fiscal year 1986 during the heart of 
        the farm crisis in the 1980's was eclipsed by direct payments made for 
        fiscal year 2000 by nearly $6,300,000,000;
Whereas even at these high levels of farm program and emergency spending, the 
        farm economy and the financial condition of farm and ranch families and 
        rural communities continues to decline;
Whereas agricultural producers are extremely frustrated and dissatisfied with 
        the inconsistent criteria for receipt of disaster payments, the 
        unpredictability of the payments, and the inequity of the payments 
        across producers, regions, and agricultural commodities; and
Whereas over the past 3 years, Congress has waited until well into the 
        legislative year before considering and responding to the need for 
        disaster payments and then has justified the use of unnecessarily 
        simplistic and fiscally wasteful payment formulas by claiming that there 
        was inadequate time to devise superior alternatives: Now, therefore, be 
        it
    Resolved, That Congress should--
            (1) enact a new farm bill during the 1st session of the 
        107th Congress;
            (2) include in the budget resolution for fiscal year 2002 
        sufficient funds to provide an adequate farm income safety net 
        and eliminate the need for off-budget, emergency spending;
            (3) ensure that all farm-related payments are allocated 
        fairly and reasonably and in relation to need; and
            (4) provide such additional sums as are necessary to fund 
        other farm bill priorities, such as priorities involving rural 
        development and telecommunication, conservation, research, 
        nutrition, and food safety.
                                 <all>

Pages: 1

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