GFB policy adopted by AFBF voting delegates
Georgia Farm Bureau Directors represented Georgia farmers in the policy development session held Jan. 9 at the 99th Annual American Farm Bureau Federation Convention. AFBF voting delegates approved 11 policies GFB submitted that addressed numerous issues including farm bill programs, international trade and ag labor.
“The policy recommendations Georgia Farm Bureau made were based on issues Georgia farmers identified as pressing at our annual convention in December,” GFB President Gerald Long said. “I’m glad to say that AFBF voting delegates adopted all of the policy we submitted. These policies will determine the position AFBF takes this year concerning the farm bill, labor and trade legislation and regulations. This is how our grassroots organization works – farmers directing how Farm Bureau represents them from the local level to the state to the national level.”
GFB secured a big win for Georgia peanut growers by getting AFBF voting delegates to support the current peanut program provisions moving forward into the pending farm bill.
AFBF voting delegates approved GFB policy that supports changing the U.S. Livestock Forage Program to allow counties next to those that receive disaster declarations to also be declared eligible for disaster assistance and to increase the number of weather stations in a county.
GFB succeeded in getting AFBF to adopt policy that proposes the upcoming farm bill include a cottonseed and/or cotton lint farm program that allows farmers to enroll their generic base acres in it.
Regarding international trade, AFBF also adopted policy GFB submitted that supports the negotiation and implementation of a revised Softwood Lumber Agreement with Canada so U.S. timber growers are protected from Canadian timber imports that are unfairly subsidized. The previous agreement the U.S. had with Canada has expired.
Concerning ag labor, AFBF adopted GFB policy that suggests the U.S. Department of Labor resurvey the average labor wage for ag workers so that the rate used in the H-2A program more accurately reflects local pay rates.