Texas Farm Bureau successfully promotes national policy resolutions
Texas Farm Bureau (TFB) voting delegates secured passage of a wide range of national policy resolutions from Texas as new policy positions of the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) at the AFBF annual meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah, Jan. 22.
TFB was represented at the AFBF business session by 29 voting delegates, the third largest delegation among the 50 state Farm Bureaus and Puerto Rico. There are a total of 346 AFBF voting delegates.
“It was a very successful business session for policy resolutions from Texas. These are important national issues for Texas farmers and ranchers, and AFBF delegates agreed that a great many of the resolutions we promoted were worthy of support,” TFB President Russell Boening said, a member of the AFBF Board of Directors.
AFBF delegates approved a Texas resolution supporting farm assistance payments, loans, grants and subsidies being paid equally without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, age, disability and reprisal or retaliation from prior civil rights activity.
Delegates approved a Texas resolution supporting efforts to ensure that water delivery to the Rio Grande River and allocations are strictly honored by the U.S. and Mexico as stipulated by the 1944 treaty, rather than being carried over into a five-year reporting cycle. Delegates also approved policy supporting timely reporting on the status of all water treaties to Congress by the International Boundary and Water Commission and others by year, including any outstanding water debts owed to the United States.
Delegates approved a Texas resolution opposing the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization and its restrictions on American agriculture, including limiting or the restricting of free market access of food and fiber.
AFBF delegates approved a Texas resolution supporting an increase in gross vehicle weight limits for raw agriculture and forestry commodities by allowing additional axles per federal bridge law.
Delegates agreed with a Texas resolution that opposes excessive single-year fee increases for consular service for H-2A or other visa programs that may be used to employ agricultural workers. New policy adopted also opposes constant changes in the requirements for services provided for H-2A workers during the contract period.
AFBF delegates approved a Texas resolution supporting vehicle manufacturers continuing to include AM radio in vehicles.
In regard to risk management and crop insurance, delegates approved a Texas resolution supporting additional crops being made eligible for double cropping insurance coverage.
Delegates supported new policy language from Texas opposing efforts to restrict access to any approved livestock or poultry vaccine technology, including specific and/or prescriptive label requirements for such vaccines or vaccine technologies. A Texas resolution was also approved that opposes the release of helium balloons into the air, excluding scientific, military and research balloons, due to dangers to livestock and the environment.
Delegates approved a Texas resolution supporting federal funds being available to poultry growers in extreme weather circumstances. Delegates also approved policy from Texas supporting transparency from integrators on the number of flocks, weight/weight changes, density of food, and other factors, with no retaliations for growers calling out malpractices.
Delegates approved Texas resolutions supporting a modified tournament pay system for contract broiler poultry grower compensation. The two-fold modified system would pay growers a base rate on a per square foot basis for operating poultry barns at the current average pay and would pay growers incentives under the current tournament system such as low-cost producers to the integrator determined by lower feed conversion, higher livability and other factors under the current system.
Delegates approved a Texas resolution supporting changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) so that benefits are to be based on average parental income.
Delegates approved Texas policy language opposing incentives for non-natural carbon capture and for construction of carbon capture pipelines.
Delegates supported a Texas resolution allowing NRCS state office staff to evaluate job applicants for positions within their state and allow them to interview applicants who make it through the screening evaluations. Delegates also supported allowing location-specific job applications and allow the beginning of the on-boarding process immediately.
Zippy Duvall of Georgia was re-elected by delegates to his fifth two-year term as AFBF president. Scott VanderWal of South Dakota was re-elected AFBF vice president.