Washington Week Ahead: Farm bill conference on the horizon

By Derrick Cain

© Copyright Agri-Pulse Communications, Inc.



WASHINGTON, July 22, 2013 - The highly-anticipated conference of the Senate and the House farm bills is likely to take more shape this week as both chambers are poised to appoint their conferees, but no one seems to know how long it will be until the formal conference can begin.

The Senate moved to send its five-year farm bill (S. 954) to the House and formally request a conference with the House. Senate conferees are expected to be comprised of senior members of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee.

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., are expected to name their conferees for the House bill (H.R. 2642), after they have resolved differences on a stand-alone nutrition title. That looks increasingly unlikely to happen before the August congressional recess.

Meanwhile, the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing Tuesday to consider Krysta Harden to serve as USDA deputy secretary. Harden would replace Kathleen Merrigan, who resigned in April.

The committee also is set to discuss the nomination of Robert Bonnie to serve as USDA under secretary for natural resources and environment.

Also, the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Energy and Power is scheduled to hold two days of hearings examining the Renewable Fuel Standard on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Further, House Republican leadership put lawmakers on notice that the FY 2014 agriculture appropriations bill and more immigration reform legislation are possible to hit the floor this month.

Lets Talk Food

Other events include:

Monday, July 22.

Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Michael Punke will attend a meeting of the World Trade Organization's Trade Negotiations Committee in Geneva, Switzerland.

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack will address the Iowa Farm Bureau's Economic Summit in Ames, Iowa.

12:00 p.m. The House will meet for morning hour debate.

2:00 p.m. The House will meet for legislative business.

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Catfish Processing

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Chickens and Eggs

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Cold Storage

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Catfish Feed Deliveries

4:00 p.m. USDA Report: Crop Progress

4:00 p.m. USDA Report: Wheat Data

Tuesday, July 23.

9:45 a.m. The House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Energy and Power will hold the first of a two-day series of hearings on “Overview of the Renewable Fuel Standard: Stakeholder Perspectives” in 2123 Rayburn. Scheduled witnesses include:

Panel I

Jack N. Gerard, president and chief executive officer of the American Petroleum Institute

Charles T. Drevna, president of the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers

Bob Dineen, president of the Renewable Fuels Association

Michael McAdams, president of the Advanced Biofuels Association

Jeremy Martin, senior scientist of the Clean Vehicles Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists

Panel II

Tom Buis, chief executive officer of Growth Energy

Shane Karr, vice president of federal government affairs for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers

Todd J. Teske, chairman and chief executive officer of Briggs & Stratton Corporation

Robert Darbelnet, president and chief executive officer of AAA

Joseph H. Petrowski, chief executive officer of the Cumberland Gulf Group on behalf of the Society of Independent Gasoline Marketers of America and the National Association of Convenience Stores

Joe Jobe, chief executive officer of the National Biodiesel Board

10:00 a.m. The Senate will convene and resume consideration of the motion to proceed to the FY 2014 transportation appropriations bill.

10:00 a.m. The House will meet for morning hour debate.

10:00 a.m. The House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management will hold a hearing on “The Future of the CFTC: Commission Perspectives” in 1300 Longworth. Scheduled witnesses include Scott D. O'Malia, CFTC commissioner, and Mark P. Wetjen, CFTC commissioner.

10:00 a.m. The House Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies will hold a markup of its FY 2014 interior and environment appropriations bill in B-308 Rayburn.

10:30 a.m. The Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee will hold a hearing to consider Krysta Harden to serve as USDA deputy secretary and Robert Bonnie to serve as USDA under secretary for natural resources and environment in 328A Russell.

10:30 a.m. The Senate Budget Committee will hold a hearing on “The Impact of Sequestration on National Security and the Economy” in Dirksen 608.

12:00 p.m. The Senate will vote on a motion to invoke cloture on a motion to proceed to the FY 2014 transportation appropriations bill.

12:00 p.m. The House will meet for legislative business.

12:30 p.m. The Senate will recess for party caucuses until 2:15 p.m.

4:00 p.m. USDA Report: Weekly Weather and Crop Bulletin (WAOB)

Wednesday, July 24.

U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman will deliver remarks at the Annual Update Conference on Export Controls and Policy, hosted by the Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security in Washington, D.C.

Froman will meet with Vietnamese Minister of Trade Vu Huy Hoang.

Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Michael Punke will attend the WTO's General Council in Geneva, Switzerland.

9:45 a.m. The House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade will hold a hearing on “EU Free Trade Agreement: Tipping Over the Regulatory Barriers” in 2123 Rayburn.

10:00 a.m. The House will meet for morning hour debate.

10:00 a.m. The House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management will hold a hearing on “The Future of the CFTC: End-User Perspectives” in 1300 Longworth.

12:00 p.m. The House will meet for legislative business.

1:30 p.m. The House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Energy and Power will hold the second of a two-day series of hearings on “Overview of the Renewable Fuel Standard: Stakeholder Perspectives” in 2123 Rayburn. Scheduled witnesses include:

Panel III

Pam Johnson, president of the National Corn Growers Association

Bill Roenigk, senior vice president of the National Chicken Council

Ed Anderson, chief executive officer of Wen-Gap, LLC on behalf of the National Council of Chain Restaurants

Scott Faber, vice president of government affairs for the Environmental Working Group

Chris Hurt, professor at Purdue University's Department of Agricultural Economics.

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: National Dairy Products Sales Report

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Broiler Hatchery

Thursday, July 25.

U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman will meet with Brunei's Second Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Lim Jock Seng.

Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Michael Punke will attend the WTO's General Council in Geneva, Switzerland.

8:30 a.m. USDA Report: U.S. Export Sales

9:00 a.m. The House will meet for legislative business.

9:00 a.m. USDA Report: Food Price Outlook

10:00 a.m. The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee's Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet will hold a hearing on the state of wireline communications in 253 Russell.

2:30 p.m. The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee's Subcommittee on Water and Power will hold a hearing to address the aging water resource infrastructure in 366 Dirksen.

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Livestock Slaughter

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Poultry Slaughter

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Citrus: World Markets and Trade

Friday, July 26.

3:00 p.m. USDA Report: Peanut Prices

4:00 p.m. USDA Report: Vegetables & Pulses Outlook

4:00 p.m. USDA Report: Monthly Milk Cost of Production

4:00 p.m. USDA Report: Fruit & Tree Nut Outlook

#30

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