June 11, 2013

Senate Takes Action on Farm Bill

The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA or the Big "I") commends the U.S. Senate for passing S. 954  the "Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2013" (known as the Senate 2013 Farm Bill) today in a 66-27 vote. The Senate version of the bill eliminates the $5 billion a year in direct payments and places more of an emphasis on the Federal Crop Insurance Program (FCIP) as the primary risk management tool for America's farmland.


The Big "I" was particularly pleased to see that an amendment offered by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) which would have stripped the FCIP of critical resources in its budget baseline was overwhelmingly defeated.


"The defeat of the harmful crop insurance amendment offered by Sen. Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) is further evidence of just how important the crop program is to the success of America's agriculture," says Robert Rusbuldt, Big "I" president & CEO. "As the exclusive sales force of the FCIP, independent insurance agents are uniquely skilled at helping farmers and ranchers make important risk management decisions about their coverage. At a time when our farmers and ranchers are being asked to rely even more on the FCIP as their primary risk management tool, independent agents are more important than ever."


The House is currently expected to consider their version of the Farm Bill during the week of June 17. The current Farm Bill is set to expire Sept. 30, 2013.

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