Hoeven Highlights Need for Enhanced Crop Insurance, Strong Farm Bill at RCIS Annual Meeting

BISMARCK, N.D. – Senator John Hoeven today stressed his commitment to including enhanced crop insurance programs in the farm bill during remarks delivered at the Rural Community Insurance Services (RCIS) meeting in Bismarck.

“Farmers and ranchers across North Dakota and the country continue to express a need for effective risk management tools, and it is important that we make sure our producers have crop insurance,” Hoeven said. “As Congress works to pass a long-term farm bill this fall, I am committed to working to ensure that the bill includes enhanced crop insurance and similar provisions that will provide producers with the market-based safety net they need to deal with volatile markets and weather so that American consumers continue to enjoy the highest quality, lowest cost food supply in the world.”

Hoeven, a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, which is charged with reauthorizing the farm bill, worked to include strong enhanced crop insurance provisions in the farm bill that passed the Senate in May. Hoeven has been named to the conference committee appointed to negotiate an agreement on a 2013 Farm Bill.

In addition to including enhanced crop insurance programs in the farm bill, Hoeven has been working to secure commonsense changes to existing prevented planting crop insurance rules. Earlier this spring, Hoeven brought RMA Acting Administrator Brandon Willis to Fargo and Bismarck to meet with North Dakota agriculture groups to press for a clarification and provide input on prevented planting rules. Hoeven also successfully included an amendment in the Senate Agriculture Appropriations bill requiring the agency to simplify the provisions to make them more predictable to producers and reflective of local conditions. On Monday RMA announced new rules, and on Tuesday, Hoeven convened roundtables in Grand Forks and Minot with Willis to clarify new RMA prevented planting rules.

RCIS is a national organization created after the crop insurance business was privatized by the federal government in 1980. RCIS provides risk management protection for more than 100 crops.