Want the facts about the U.S. farm policy. Get what you need at:
www.farmpolicyfacts.com

 


Senate Letter Notes Concern About Cotton
Provisions Discussed By WTO Ag Negotiators

Friday, September 21, 2007                       By Shawn Wade

      Significant concern about theproposed treatment of cotton, and specifically the singling out of the U.S.cotton industry for unique and differential treatment, in a WTO draft textreleased by Ambassador Crawford Falconer of New Zealand has spurred RepublicanSenator Saxby Chambliss of Georgia, ranking member of the Senate AgricultureCommittee, to send a letter to the U.S. Trade Representative.

      Chambliss' letter, addresseddirectly to USTR Ambassador Susan Schwab, was quickly endorsed by nine fellowCotton State Senators and asked that the Bush Administration official work toprevent cotton from being unfairly targeted for treatment outside of theparameters being negotiated for other commodities within the Doha Roundagricultural negotiation.

      Joining Senator Chambliss onthe letter were Senators Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), MarkPryor (D-AR), Lindsey Graham, (R-NC), Thad Cochran (R-MS), Richard Burr (R-NC),David Vitter (R-LA), and Mary Landrieu (D-LA).

      Also contacted, but notablyabsent from the letter, were Texas Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison and JohnCornyn who represent the largest cotton producing state in the U.S. and one ofthe largest cotton producing regions in the world.

      The Texas cotton industry hasrepeatedly expressed its concern to Senators Cornyn and Hutchison about thetreatment of cotton since the start of the WTO Doha negotiations. That factmakes their failure to join the highest-ranking Republican member of the SenateAgriculture Committee in expressing concern about the situation extremelytroubling.

      "Agriculture is the secondlargest industry in Texas and cotton is the number one row-crop produced inthis State," says Plains Cotton Growers Executive Vice President Steve Verett. "The potential for Texas cotton producers and allied industries to benegatively impacted by the cotton proposal put forth by Ambassador Falconershould to be a top priority for all of our Congressional leaders.

 

Johanns Resignation Expected To Have
Little Impact On Farm Bill Development Process

Friday, September 21, 2007                       By Shawn Wade

      Thursday's resignation ofSecretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns was met with little fanfare in farmcountry. The departure is expected to have little to no effect on the 2007 FarmBill development process since it is unlikely that the Bush Administration'sfarm policy positions will change

      Figuring predominantly in hisdecision to make the move is Johanns' planned run for the Nebraska Senate seatcurrently held by Senator Chuck Hagel. Senator Hagel has announced that he willnot seek re-election in 2008.

      One of the primary reasonsthat little impact is expected to be felt in the farm bill development processwas the simultaneous announcement by President George Bush that USDA DeputySecretary Charles Conner was being named acting Secretary of Agriculture.

      Prior to moving to hiscurrent post, Conner was a key developer of Bush Administration farm policypositions. Since moving to USDA, Conner has continued to be a primary force inthe development and articulation of Bush Administration farm policy positions.Conner was the main Administration representative during the House farm billdebate.

      Plains Cotton GrowersExecutive Vice President Steve Verett echoed that sentiment when asked forcomment on Johanns' announcement.

      "I see it as a totalnon-event," concluded Verett.

      He explained that since theHouse of Representatives has already passed its version of the 2007 Farm Billand the Senate Agriculture Committee is expected to begin formal work on theirown version within the next few weeks, there is little time for theAdministration position on farm policy to change.

      He notes that the favorableview a majority of agriculture holds regarding current U.S. farm programs wasclearly demonstrated when the House Ag Committee voted unanimously to extendthe safety net provisions of the current program. By focusing more effort intoimproving an already popular set of farm policy mechanisms, the HAC was able toagree on a broad set of improvements in other program areas such asconservation and improving support for the fruit and vegetable industry.

      While Senate Ag Committee ChairmanTom Harkin floats new ideas almost daily, he has so far provided littleconcrete evidence of what his final recommendations might be heading intoCommittee mark-up. Despite the meandering course it is taking, however, thefarm bill is inching closer to consideration in the Senate.

      With a hodge-podge ofpossibilities for which way it will actually move, staying up to speed on thelatest changes has been an exercise in diligence. The best informationavailable right now indicates the most likely time frame for significant Senateaction could be the third week of October. Things could move either before orafter that time, but the September 30 expiration of the current bill seems tomake this a likely target for Senate leaders.

      An extension of spendingauthority for current programs beyond September 30 is planned to be included ina continuing resolution on the budget that will have to be done before the endof the current fiscal year.

 

 

Wantthe facts about the U.S. farm policy. Get what you need at:
www.farmpolicyfacts.com

 

2007County Crop Tours and Field Days

      The table below contains apartial listing of the events already scheduled. Growers interested inattending any of the Texas Cooperative Extension events should contact theappropriate TCE County office to request additional details.

      For more information aboutthe industry Field Days listed below contact your local sales representative ordealer. Additional details will be included in "Cotton News" as they becomeavailable.

      Ifyou have knowledge of information that needs to be added to any of the eventsalready listed or a date you would like to have added to this calendar pleasecontact Shawn Wade at 806-792-4904.

2007 High Plains Event Calendar

Event:

Date:

Hale Co. Harvest Aid Training

September 25

Castro Co. Harvest Aid Training, Dodd

September 26

Mitchell Co. Ag Tour

 

October 11

 

Industry Field Days:

Date:

Americot Field Day, Inside 4barK,

Lubbock, Registration - 9:45 AM

September 25

FiberMax/Stoneville/AFD Field Day,

FM 1729 & FM 41. Please RSVP by

September 24 by calling your local

Sales Representative or 806-765-8844.

 

September 26 - Southern

September 27 - Northern

D&PL Field Day, Lorenzo, 10:00 AM

October 3

 

NRCS To Hold 2008 EQIP PDG/LWG Meetings

      Texas Soil and WaterConservation Districts invite the public, and any agencies with interest, toparticipate in the agency's 2008 Program Development Group (PDG) meetings.

      The purpose of the PDG's isto provide members of the community a forum for submitting recommendations onlocal issues and county based funding that can be addressed through theEnvironmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).

      Local Soil and WaterConservation Districts (SWCD) conduct PDG meetings in partnership with USDA-NaturalResources Conservation Service (NRCS).

      Each county in Texas holdsthe public meetings annually and meeting information will soon be posted on theTexas NRCS website (www.tx.nrcs.usda.gov). A partial list of PDG meetings already scheduled forthe High Plains and South Plains regions is included in the table below.

 

2008 EQIP PDG Meeting Dates & Locations

County:

Date:

Time:

Location:

 

 

Potter

TBA

 

Amarillo

 

Randall

10/9/07

9:30 AM

Farm Bureau 1714 5th Ave., Canyon

 

Oldham

9/25/07

10:00 AM

Vega Banking Center-Confer. Room, Vega

 

Stonewall

10/11/07

9:00 AM

County Courthouse, Aspermont

 

King

10/11/07

1:30 PM

Community Center, Guthrie

 

Dallam

10/11/07

8:00 PM

Bar H Restaurant, Dalhart

 

Hartley

10/2/07

2:00 PM

Bar H Restaurant, Hartley

 

Moore

10/4/07

9:00 AM

Moore Cty. Extension Classroom, Dumas

 

Sherman

10/10/07

9:00 AM

Happy State Bank, Stratford

 

Deaf Smith

10/2/07

9:00 AM

Hereford Com. Cent. 100 Ave C, Hereford

 

Castro

10/3/07

8:00 AM

USDA Service Center, Dimmitt

 

Parmer

10/4/07

9:30 AM

EMS Bldg.109 3rd St, Bovina

 

Lubbock

9/27/07

9:00 AM

USDA-ARS, 3810 4th St., Lubbock

 

Crosby

TBA

 

Crosbyton

 

Hockley

9/25/07

8:00 AM

Chase Bank, Levelland

 

Motley

10/9/07

8:00 AM

USDA Service Center, Matador

 

Cottle

10/11/07

9:00 AM

USDA Service Center, Paducah

 

Hardeman

10/10/07

9:00 AM

Community Center, Quanah

 

Foard

10/2/07

6:00 PM

Crowell State Bank, Crowell

 

Hall

10/9/07

9:00 AM

1st B&T Bronze Room, Memphis

 

Childress

10/9/07

2:00 PM

Childress Service Center Annex, Childress

 

Donley

9/27/07

2:00 PM

Ranch & Feed Bldg., Clarendon College, Clarendon

 

Cochran

9/25/07

8:30 AM

Cochran Co. Activities Bldg., Morton

 

Bailey

9/26/07

9:00 AM

Five Area Telephone, Meeting Rm., Muleshoe

 

Gray

TBA

 

Pampa

 

Hemphill

10/10/07

6:00 PM

Hemphill County Exhibition Barn, Canadian

 

Roberts

10/9/07

7:30 AM

KNT Cafˇ, Miami

 

Carson

10/9/07

2:00 PM

USDA Service Center, Panhandle

 

Armstrong

10/2/07

1:00 PM

NRCS/SWCD Office, Claude

 

Hale

10/12/07

11:00 AM

USDA Service Center, Plainview

 

Lamb

10/1/07

9:30 AM

Lamb Co. Electric, Littlefield

 

Floyd

10/9/07

9:00 AM

USDA Service Center, Floydada

 

Gaines

10/11/07

9:30 AM

USDA Service Center, Seminole

 

Dawson

9/25/07

8:00 AM

USDA Service Center, Lamesa

 

Yoakum

10/3/07

9:00 AM

Plains Comm. Center, 1006 Ave. G, Plains

 

Scurry/Borden

10/10/07

1:00 PM

DCOS Room, 3610 College Ave., Snyder

 

Fisher

10/15/07

10:00 AM

Roby Community Center, Roby

 

Hansford

10/9/07

1:00 PM

First State Bank, Spearman, Spearman

 

Hutchinson

10/10/07

9:30 PM

Holt School House, Stinnett

 

Lipscomb

10/4/07

1:00 PM

Follett Community Center, Follett

 

Ochiltree

10/4/07

8:00 AM

Museum Of Plains, 1200 N. Main, Perryton

 

Dickens

10/10/07

7:00 PM

USDA Service Center, Spur

 

Kent

10/9/2007

5:30 PM

Kent County Courthouse, Jayton

 

Lynn

10/10/07

8:00 AM

Tahoka Housing Authority, Tahoka

 

Terry

10/2/07

8:00 AM

Calvary Baptist Church, Brownfield

 

Garza

10/5/07

9:00 AM

Wells Fargo Bank, 216 Main St., Post

 

Swisher

10/4/07

9:00 AM

Swisher County Annex, Tulia

 

Briscoe

10/11/07

5:00 PM

City Bank (Pioneer Room), Silverton

 

Collingsworth

10/9/07

8:30 AM

Roberson Restaurant Hwy 83, Wellington

 

Wheeler

10/4/07

8:00 AM

USDA Service Center, Wheeler