The House Agriculture Committee is expected to release the text of its draft farm bill as soon as this morning.

Republicans continue working to get at least a few Democrats on board with the bill. That would allow Republicans to call the legislation bipartisan, although the planned cut to the nutrition title alone is likely to ensure there’s relatively little Democratic support, if any. Without that cut, the bill would likely lose some GOP support.
Take note: One of the key Democrats being targeted by Republicans and farm groups is North Carolina Rep. Don Davis, who’s in a tough re-election race. Davis was seen huddling with House Ag Chairman Glenn Thompson during votes on Thursday. He also met Thursday with Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., and other Democratic “Frontliners,” members who are in competitive races.
Agri-Pulse’s Rebekah Alvey caught up with Davis and asked him how he’s feeling about next week’s committee markup. “It’s a process,” he said with a laugh.
 “What I would really highlight is that we're talking, and I just think that is so important. We're talking to each other. Members are talking across the aisle. We're just obviously trying to see where we can land next week,” he said.
Check for developments.
House GOP lays groundwork for new spending battle
 House Republicans will make another run at cutting domestic spending programs in June and July. House Appropriations Committee Chairman Tom Cole, R-Okla., on Thursday announced the tentative spending allocations, known as 302(b)s, for the 12 appropriations bills.
 Those allotments would reduce non-defense programs by 6%, with some subcommittees getting cut in the range of 10-11%. The Ag spending bill, which funds USDA, FDA and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, was allocated $25.8 billion for FY25. That compares to the $26.2 billion appropriated for FY24.
 The Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee is scheduled to vote on that spending bill June 11. The full Appropriations Committee will consider the bill July 10.
 “Our FY25 process will reflect our commitment to strengthening our national defense, supporting the safety and security of the American people, and reining in government to its core mission,” Cole said in a statement.
 The committee’s top Democrat, Rosa DeLauro, called on Republicans to rethink their spending caps and avoid the “messy, chaotic” FY24 spending process. “We know how this will end. House Democrats are ready to negotiate bills that can actually become law,” she said.
DOE says it will follow better practices in awarding carbon capture funds
 The Energy Department has agreed to follow procedures it has already outlined for awarding money to fund carbon capture, use and sequestration, or CCUS, projects.
In response to a Government Accountability Office report, DOE said it would direct staff to follow its Merit Review Guide for Financial assistance and said it es updating guidance on assessing the risk of projects.
 GAO reviewed 40 projects and found one that had been awarded $14.6 million even though its technical score did not meet the Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management’s threshold. FECM did not document why the project was selected, GAO said.
 The ongoing project “has since experienced cost overruns and delays, resulting in an additional $5.1 million in FECM funding and an additional 18 months to complete,” GA0 said. “It is unclear how widespread these practices are across all 410 FECM projects.”
 DOE awarded $1.4 billion from 2018 through 2023 for CCUS and direct air capture projects. It has another $12 billion to spend in the coming years.
Why it matters: Carbon capture and sequestration is an integral part of the Biden administration’s myriad regulatory efforts to reduce greenhouse gases, including its power plant rule, which relies on the technology heavily. The rule is being challenged by rural electric cooperatives and 23 states that call it unrealistic.

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Vilsack highlights DEI work at department, diversity of leadership
 Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack touted the department’s work on diversity, equity and inclusion at an event at the Sherrod Institute in Georgia, which former USDA employee Shirley Sherrod started after leaving the agency in a highly publicized incident that led eventually to the formation of USDA’s Equity Commission.
“Everything I'm going to tell you about the Department of Agriculture and its efforts at diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility today and tomorrow and in the future, everything connects back to Shirley Sherrod. Everything,” Vilsack told those in attendance.
 He said senior leadership at USDA is the most diverse it’s ever been. “That was expressly done because we knew that if we made that leadership cohort diverse, we would get a better USDA,” he said.
 Sherrod was forced out of her position as head of director of USDA’s Rural Development office in Georgia in 2010 after a highly misleading video was posted by a right-wing news site that appeared to show her discussing how she declined to help a white farmer before she was employed at USDA.
That farmer later thanked Sherrod helping save his farm. Vilsack apologized to Sherrod, who served on the Equity Commission that delivered a wide-ranging report with dozens of recommendations to Vilsack in February.
 Ag research advisory board gets new members

 Seven new members have been appointed to the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board, and three have been reappointed, USDA said.
 “Members represent a mix of university, non-profit, and industry representatives,” the department said. New members include Vanessa Garcia Polanco, policy co-director for the National Young Farmers Coalition, and Margaret Smith, associate dean and director of the Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station.
She said it. “We’re running out of time. But it’s still doable.” - Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., on the tight timeframe for passing a farm bill this year.
Rebekah Alvey and Philip Brasher contributed to this report
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