Hoeven Holds Roundtable with North Dakota Ag Groups to Discuss Farm Bill Progress

Senate Scheduled to Vote on Farm Bill Early Next Week

FARGO, N.D. – Senator John Hoeven today convened a roundtable with North Dakota agriculture groups to outline highlights of the five-year farm bill recently approved by the House-Senate conference committee, and passed by the House of Representatives.

As a member of the conference committee, Hoeven worked to hammer out a bipartisan farm bill agreement that could attract support from both Republicans and Democrats in both the House and Senate. The House approved the measure on Wednesday by a vote of 251-166. The Senate is scheduled to vote on final passage of the bill this coming Tuesday.

“We’ve been working hard to find a bipartisan agreement on a long-term farm bill that could pass in both the House and the Senate, because we know how important it is to provide our farmers and ranchers with the certainty they need to run their operations,” said Hoeven. “The agreement forged by the conference committee and approved by the House includes important provisions for our state, including enhanced crop insurance, continuation of the sugar program and assistance for our livestock producers. We made a lot of progress this week and we continue working to push it over the final goal line in the Senate next week.”

The final version of the farm bill retains a strong focus on enhanced crop insurance, including a new Supplemental Coverage Option (SCO) and new Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) to help producers through years of repetitive losses. In addition, it will provide assistance to livestock producers hit by the blizzard earlier this winter. It also continues the sugar program, while saving nearly $24 billion to help reduce the deficit and debt.

Senator Heidi Heitkamp and Congressman Kevin Cramer were represented by staff at the meeting. North Dakota agriculture leaders invited to the meeting include: Steve Strege with the North Dakota Grain Dealers Association, Nick Sinner and Paul Rutherford with the Red River Valley Sugar Beet Growers, David Berg and Robert Green with American Crystal Sugar, USDA Farm Service Agency State Director Aaron Krauter, Jason Mewes and Nancy Johnson with the North Dakota Soybean Growers, Tom Lilja and Betsy Armour with the North Dakota Corn Growers, Steve Edwardson with the North Dakota Barley Growers, North Dakota Farmers Union President Mark Watne, NDFU District 6 State Director Ellen Linderman, and Norm Enerson of Enerson Crop Insurance.