This past week the U.S. House of Representatives began debate on a Continuing Resolution (CR) for funding the federal budget. The Republican leaders approved an "open rule" for amendments to the CR, which allows for nearly any topic to be debated. As of Wednesday February 16, more than 400 amendments had been filed, and debate could last for several weeks.
"Few of these amendments are likely to be passed, but we are concerned with several ethanol-related amendments," says Mindy Larson Poldberg, director of government relations for the Iowa Corn Growers Association. "Amendments have been filed to prohibit EPA from using funding to implement E15, prohibit funding for blender pump infrastructure, and to prevent full implementation of the federal Renewable Fuels Standard. The Iowa congressmen who are members of the U.S. House of Representatives are generally supportive of ethanol. But we are asking Iowa corn growers to please consider contacting their congressman to ask them to oppose any amendment that harms corn-based ethanol."
Anti-ethanol amendments concern Iowa Corn Growers Association
"Other amendments of interest to our ICGA members include prohibiting funding to the EPA for regulation of greenhouse gas emissions, and reduction of subsidies for the oil and gas industry for production of regular petroleum gasoline or what we call E-zero," says Poldberg. "We will continue to monitor what's going on with the anti-ethanol amendments that are being introduced in congress and we will report to our members the information on these amendments."
Meanwhile, Poldberg is asking Iowa corn growers to contact their congressmen and ask them to support ethanol and vote against any anti-ethanol amendments.
She points out that many members of congress have gone to using "webforms" for constituent emails. This means you need to go to the congressmen's websites (listed below) and click on the "contact" button. You then enter in your information on the forms. Unfortunately, to save your message, you will need to create it in another form and copy it to the webforms.
Email addresses or web forms for Iowa's five congressmen are:
* Congressman Boswell: email@example.com or email webform at boswell.house.gov or call (202) 225-3806.
* Congressman Braley: Email webform: braley.house.gov or call (202) 225-2911.
* Congressman King: firstname.lastname@example.org or Email webform at steveking.house.gov or call (202) 225-4426.
* Congressman Latham: email@example.com or Email webform at tomlatham.house.gov or call 202-225-5476.
* Congressman Loebsack: Email webform: loebsack.house.gov or call 202-225-6576.
Mark you calendar, save the date: ICGA "Day on the Hill" is March 22
The Iowa Corn Growers Association will be hosting its annual "Day on the Hill" at the State Capitol building in Des Moines on the afternoon of March 22, 2011, says Mindy Larson Poldberg. All ICGA members are welcome to attend this grassroots lobbying effort sponsored by ICGA. "Please join us at the ICGA office at noon for lunch, and then travel to the capitol to visit with your legislator in the afternoon," says Poldberg. "If you would like to join us for a complimentary lunch, please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday, March 18."