Farmers, ranchers focus on policy concerns at annual meeting
(WACO, Texas)—In a year of uncertainty, Texas farmers and ranchers established policy to help guide the agricultural advocacy efforts of Texas Farm Bureau (TFB), the state’s largest general farm and ranch organization.
“This year has been challenging, but farmers and ranchers have continued to do what we do best—farm and ranch—even in the face of uncertainty,” Russell Boening, TFB president, said. “Our annual meeting is a time when our membership comes together to help chart the course of Farm Bureau’s political advocacy efforts for farmers, ranchers and rural communities.”
During the 87th annual meeting’s business session, which was held Dec. 5 in Waco, voting delegates passed policy that supports legislation to incentivize the development of livestock and poultry processing facilities.
“The COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent shutdowns drastically impacted Texas ranchers,” Boening said. “As we move forward, Farm Bureau members welcome any solutions that can help remedy the supply chain issues we experienced this year, and that could mean helping more smaller and mid-sized processing facilities become federally inspected.”
Delegates also issued support for a solution for robust price discovery in the cattle market, and they approved a policy supporting the continuation of USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service import labeling requirements staying with all products to the end consumer.
Policy supporting programs that provide funding for the processing of wildlife to be donated to food banks and other entities was passed by the delegates.
They also discussed and passed policy requiring performance bonds to ensure surface remediation in eminent domain condemnations.
“Many landowners who have property seized by entities with the power of eminent domain report surface damage issues following installation or maintenance of a project,” Boening said. “The entity fails to restore the easement area and the property around it to the original condition. When landowners try to receive remediation for inadequate repair or clean up through litigation, it can be costly. Requiring a performance bond would help remedy this issue for private property owners in Texas.”
Voting delegates also supported policy that established items to be included in appraisals to property owners from appraisal districts. Those items included disclosure of property deed and ownership of land from high speed rail entities.
In other action, Walt Hagood of Lynn-Garza County, John Paul Dineen III of Ellis County, Mickey Edwards of Lampasas County and Pete Pawelek of Atascosa County were re-elected to two-year terms on the state board of directors.
Mark Daniel of Baylor County was elected vice president, and Hagood was elected secretary-treasurer.
Two new directors were also elected.
Warren Cude of Fort Stockton is the new District 6 state director. He has a commercial cow-calf operation and raises registered and commercial sheep. He also operates a helicopter service for livestock gathering and predation management. Cude previously served as president and vice president of Pecos-Reeves County Farm Bureau. He has participated in TFB’s leadership program, FarmLead, and served on TFB’s Sheep and Goat, Animal Health and Predator advisory committees, as well as the state Resolutions Committee. He and his wife Darla have one son and two grandchildren.
The new District 12 state director is Brian Adamek of Victoria. He grows corn and cotton in Victoria County. He has served several years in numerous roles, including president, on the Victoria County Farm Bureau board of directors. He participated in AgLead, a TFB leadership program, and served as TFB’s Young Farmer & Rancher Advisory Committee chair. He and his wife Jaclyn have two sons.
Click here to view membership recognition, Outstanding Young Farmer & Rancher contest winner, Excellence in Agriculture contest winner, Discussion Meet winner and more announcements from the virtual opening session.
For more information about Texas Farm Bureau, visit https://texasfarmbureau.org.