Nearly 100 members of the Iowa Corn Growers Association filled the Iowa state Capitol rotunda on March 21 for the “Iowa Corn Day on the Hill” lobbying event. This delegation included the ICGA board of directors, county corn grower leaders and student FFA members from across the state.
Their lobbying efforts focused on increasing state coupling of federal Section 179 expensing provision, protecting agriculture in comprehensive tax reform and obtaining funding for biofuels infrastructure. In addition, farmers took time to thank the state lawmakers who helped pass water quality legislation, Senate File 512, signed into law earlier this session.
Urging lawmakers to act
Iowa Corn Day on the Hill is an event to facilitate one-on-one interactions with state legislators where Iowa Corn members can discuss and promote ICGA policy priorities and issues important to Iowa agriculture,” says ICGA President Mark Recker, a farmer from Arlington in northeast Iowa.
“The dedication and engagement of our members allow ICGA to have a strong, unified voice on issues important to Iowa agriculture at the state capitol in Des Moines.”
ICGA’s “Day of the Hill” efforts focused on the organization’s top state legislative priorities for this 2018 session, including:
• long-term conservation and water quality funding for the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy
• funding for Iowa’s Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program, a cost-share program to help pay for installation of blender pumps and tanks for biofuels at retail fuel stations
• full state coupling of the federal Section 179 small-business expensing provision
• comprehensive tax reform to protect agriculture
“Our focus is on measures that will help Iowa’s struggling farm economy and at the top of our list is Section 179,” Recker says. “We are asking for full coupling of Section 179 to the federal provision, allowing farmers and small businesses to expense and depreciate capital expenses on their tax returns. Section 179 is a key tool for farmers and small businesses alike, as it allows businesses to deduct the full purchase price of qualifying equipment during that tax year.”
Contact statehouse representative
One of ICGA’s legislative successes, this session was the signing of water quality legislation by Gov. Kim Reynolds. “We thank the state Legislature and the governor for the passage and signing of SF512, allowing for a stable and increased funding source to improve Iowa’s water quality,” Recker says. “These dollars will provide additional resources, education and outreach helping farmers scale-up conservation practices on their farms and in their communities.”
To see ICGA’s full list of state and federal priorities for 2018, visit iowacorn.org/policy.
Source: Iowa Corn Growers Association