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Agriculture Subcommittee adopts 5-year extension of current law

Jun '07
The House Committee on Agriculture's Subcommittee for General Farm Commodities and Risk Management unanimously adopted a five-year extension of current law as the basis for the commodities title of the 2007 farm legislation.

After rejecting three alternative proposals, including a proposal put forward by the Administration, the subcommittee adopted Chairman Bob Etheridge's (D-NC) proposal to extend current law, replacing an earlier proposal which would have adopted most cotton industry recommendations to improve the operation of the program but would have reduced the base loan to 50 cents, the target price to 70 cents and imposed direct attribution on direct and counter- cyclical payments.

The Subcommittee then adopted an amendment by Rep. Jim Marshall (D-GA) that includes a majority of the recommendations adopted by the National Cotton Council's Board as developed by a special industry working group.

The provisions would, if enacted and implemented, improve market orientation of the program, competitiveness in all markets and the flow into marketing channels while enhancing market income and preserving an effective safety-net for growers.

The provisions require USDA to establish loan premiums and discounts for the 2008 and subsequent crops using spot market data weighted by production; to modify the calculation of the weekly AWP to more accurately reflect the competitive environment; and, provide a competitiveness payment to domestic mills for all upland cotton consumed.

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