Production agriculture is the heart of America. In fact, the Fourth District of Oklahoma is the proud home to more than 13,000 farms and ranches. We cannot take for granted the hard work and innovation of the agriculture sector or the value they add to the economy.
Sadly, production agriculture has become an afterthought in a country whose citizens spend a smaller percentage of their income on food than anywhere else in the world. While our population continues to shift to urban centers, many Americans are unaware of the hard work and innovation our farmers and ranchers bring to production agriculture.
There are no better stewards of the land than those whose livelihood depends on that land. Unfortunately, the government’s overregulation of air quality, water and pesticides (through the Environmental Protection Agency) often poses needlessly high compliance costs for farmers and ranchers, which is crippling for agriculture production in rural America.
I work closely with Congressman Frank Lucas (OK-03), a member of the House Committee on Agriculture, and other members in the Oklahoma delegation to ensure that our farmers and ranchers are not left behind and that safety nets, such as crop insurance, remain in place to protect against the volatile effects of drought, floods, tornadoes and other disasters.
More on Agriculture
As Congress continues to finish its work this year, I am encouraged that lawmakers in both chambers recently finalized and approved legislation that is vital to the success of our nation’s farmers and ranchers. Introduced under various titles over the years but known generally as the Farm Bill, this comprehensive piece of legislation is revisited every five years to ensure the best results are still being delivered to producers and consumers.
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) praised today’s passage of the Agricultural Act of 2014. It is the final product of the joint conference committee that reconciled differences between the farm bills of the House and Senate. By repealing or making changes to various programs and reducing regulations, this bill saves taxpayers $23 billion in mandatory federal spending.
The Oklahoman - Chris Casteel
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) praised passage of H.R. 2642, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management (FARRM) Act of 2013. The legislation was introduced on the House floor by Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (OK-03) and passed by a vote of 216-208 on Thursday.
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the House voted on H.R. 1947, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management (FARRM) Act of 2013. The bill was defeated on the House floor by a vote of 195-234 on Thursday. Cole supported the bill that was introduced by fellow Oklahoman and Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (OK-03).
Passage of FARRM would have saved taxpayers $40 billion by streamlining or eliminating more than 100 programs administered by the USDA, including direct payments to farmers.