Bi-partisan group of Senators introduce new farm bill plan

By Sara Wyant

© Copyright Agri-Pulse Communications, Inc.



WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 - Senators Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, John Thune, R-SD, Dick Durbin, D-IL and Richard Lugar, R-Ind. plan to introduce a comprehensive farm bill plan today called the Aggregate Risk and Revenue Management (ARRM) program. Their plan, which builds on the current Average Crop Revenue Election (ACRE) program, would be less complicated and more responsive than many of the current programs, the Senators note.

"With volatile prices and rising input costs, many producers determined that a revenue-oriented program like ACRE would be a better tool for managing that risk than the traditional suite of farm programs,” noted the Senators in a background paper provided to Agri-Pulse.  

The program would eliminate and replace the current direct and counter-cyclical payment programs, as well as the standing disaster program, known as SURE, with a program that resembles parts of the current ACRE program. However, the program would determine losses at the crop reporting district level, rather than the state level, reduce the overlap with crop insurance, and simplify the application and administrative processes, while saving billions of taxpayer dollars. 

Compared to continuation of current programs, ARRM would save about $20 billion, according to the Congressional Budget Office.  

Under ARRM, farmers would no longer be required to sign up for the life of the farm bill (as currently required under ACRE) and payments would be based on planted acres, rather than capped by base acres. There would also be full planting flexibility, with no reduction in payments if a farmer decided to plant fruits and vegetables on base acres.

 

For more background on key components and how program would work.
 


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