WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) today received the Wheat Advocate award from the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) and its Ohio affiliate, the Ohio Corn and Wheat Growers Association (OCWGA), for his ongoing work on the farm bill. Brown is Ohio’s first Senator on the Agriculture Committee in more than forty years.
“Strong rural communities and a thriving agriculture industry demand investment and attention,” Brown said. “That’s why I will continue the fight to pass a five-year farm bill that includes the risk management tools farmers depend on to create jobs, boost development, and promote growth in rural America. I appreciate the Ohio Corn and Wheat Grower’s work on behalf of Ohio farmers and I am honored to receive this award.”
On June 21st the Senate passed a bipartisan, five-year farm bill, the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act, which saved $23 billion and included significant reforms to federal farm, food, and rural policies. In December 2012, Brown joined a bipartisan group of 33 senators in urging the inclusion the Senate-passed farm bill in any end-of-year legislative package, but the full House of Representatives never considered a comparable bill.
The 2008 farm bill expired on September 30, 2012 and was extended through September 2013 as part of the tax passage signed into law on January 2nd, 2013. The one-year extension provides the U.S. Department of Agriculture with the authority to continue operating current programs, but does not provide funding for key conservation, organic, renewable energy, rural economic development, and healthy food access programs of importance to many Ohioans. As the 113th Congress begins, the work of writing a five-year farm bill will begin again.
One in seven Ohio jobs is related to the food and agriculture industry. Brown authored provisions in the Senate-passed farm bill that would save taxpayer dollars while creating jobs and boosting rural development. Brown, who serves as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Jobs, Rural Economic Growth and Energy Innovation, is the first Ohioan on the Senate Agriculture Committee in more than 40 years. Here are some provisions Brown inserted in the farm bill.