Legislation Matters
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Running into 2019 with–Certainty?

As you plan your spring planting, you assess the many things necessary to prepare for the new season.  Likely, this includes a review of production records, determining fertilizer needs, evaluating field sustainability and crop rotation, checking future prices on commodities you grow, considering other agriculture crop production, and evaluating labor requirements. While planning, you also hold close your family, friends, community and country. Certainly, you could count your blessings.

Things might not be exactly as you’d planned and adjustments will be necessary. Looking back at the last year, you might even remember a few of the obstacles you overcame, like an equipment breakdown in the middle of planting season or the volatile market. Whatever the obstacle, you faced it head on, and created the best outcome from difficult circumstances.
Today we find ourselves in the New Year with a new Farm Bill, and new or changing markets. The 2018 Farm Bill should provide certainty for Michigan and Wisconsin farmers while fueling opportunities in rural communities. There are historic investments in land, water, and wildlife conservation. No matter what your priority, there is something more to consider and evaluate. Like your own business, Washington, D.C. legislative outcomes are not perfect.

The communication with those who serve us in their roles continually needs to be enhanced, educating them on what works for our members and what might not.
These are not easy times in agriculture, and the landscape of rural America continues to evolve. Staying engaged with legislative leaders on every issue remains important because challenging and changing times could result in disruption. While having a Farm Bill in place for the next 5 years, there will be needs for adjustment. There will always be uncertainty to manage.

Putting the Farm Bill programs in place may create some opportunities, and may affect the market. Getting the Farm Bill in place before expiration created certainty, it is time to evaluate and operationalize those programs that make sense for you. This is certain; how it may help or hinder your 2019 planning and operation may not yet be certain. Time to plow through the programs is now. 

As a stakeholder in the future, assessing then overcoming obstacles makes us stronger together, and communicating this to legislators can make a difference. A Farm Bill passed with the help of many communicating its importance. Now it is time to discover and apply the opportunity, knowing that it may not be perfect. Count the blessings and appreciate the leaders that got it done.

Link to full article: https://issuu.com/greenstonefcs/docs/partners_winter_19_final/24  

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