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Ag Issues Discussed At State, National Level

Missouri Farm Bureau delivers priority list to State Legislature.

January 24, 2011

2 Min Read

Agricultural organizations, such as Missouri Farm Bureau, spend a considerable amount of time and effort working with members to determine policy issues on the state and national levels.  

Blake Hurst, Missouri Farm Bureau president, says when Farm Bureau testifies in Jefferson City or Washington, D.C., "legislators are well aware the issues we speak about have been discussed and debated by our members, their constituents."

The Missouri House of Representatives Agriculture Policy Committee took testimony last week on major issues facing agriculture. Missouri Farm Bureau state lobbyist Leslie Holloway says that while Missouri Farm Bureau is working on many issues this year, it has three agricultural priorities for the beginning of the session:

1. Greater protection for farmers from nuisance suits

2. Landowner and motorist concerns with elk reintroduction in Missouri

3. Modifications to Proposition B

"Missouri farmers are experiencing increased exposure to nuisance suits from neighbors, activists and law firms targeting agriculture, even if the farming operation is reputable and following all state and federal laws and regulations," Holloway says. "For farmers to defend themselves, the legal costs can be staggering. Legislation is being considered this session to change Missouri's nuisance law to limit damages and make other improvements."

Late last year, the Missouri Conservation Commission voted to reintroduce elk in three counties in southern Missouri. "Missouri Farm Bureau opposed the Commission's decision," Holloway says, "and supports legislation to make the Conservation Department financially responsible for the value of crops and pasture damaged or destroyed by elk; the indemnification of losses suffered by livestock producers as a result of disease spread from elk; the value of fencing and other private property damaged by elk; and the personal injury and damage incurred in a collision with elk or livestock released due to elk."

At its annual meeting in December, MFB reaffirmed the policy condemning the mistreatment of animals and supporting reasonable, proven standards regulating the care of animals. Farm Bureau believes Proposition B goes too far in its requirements for dog breeders, duplicates regulations already on the books, and will put good dog breeders out of business. The organization will work to make needed changes to the law.

 Source: Missouri Farm Bureau

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