Nebraska Farm Bureau has announced its slate of Federal candidates receiving the ‘Friend of Agriculture’ designation, as well as identifying a slate of state legislative candidates who have received the Nebraska Farm Bureau – PAC endorsement. Check out this week’s video for a full rundown.

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Friend of Agriculture and Endorsements

Trump/Biden Respond to AFBF Survey

For the past 40 years, the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) has asked every presidential candidate to provide responses to issues likely to impact and affect farmers and ranchers and rural communities. Both President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden have completed the 2020 AFBF questionnaire. The responses are unedited and are shared in the same style that they were provided to AFBF. Check out what the candidates have to say about issues impacting agriculture.

Read Candidates Responses

President Donald J. Trump and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced on September 18, up to an additional $14 billion for agricultural producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Signup for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) will begin September 21 and run through December 11, 2020. Nebraska Farm Bureau has developed a guide to help members get a better understanding of the program.

NEFB Guide to CFAP 2

USDA CFAP Resources

With harvest underway, don’t forget to put Farm Bureau’s overweight permit exemption form to work for you! The seasonal overweight permit exemption allows farmers to exceed the legal weight limit on loads by up to 15 percent from field to farm storage, field to market, or, as of November 13, 2020, from stockpile or farm storage to market or factory, if travel is within 70 miles. Using Nebraska Farm Bureau’s form and complying with requirements can exempt you from having to obtain the seasonal overweight harvest permit.

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Earlier this year, the Nebraska Farm Bureau (NEFB) created a Cattle Markets Task Force charged with examining current Farm Bureau policy, providing policy recommendations, and providing input on what NEFB’s role should be in addressing concerns regarding cattle markets. Over the last five months, the Task Force met online and in person with a wide range of interests across the entire beef supply chain to develop recommendations for consideration by members as part of Nebraska Farm Bureau’s policy development process. The findings and recommendations of the Task Force are now available to Farm Bureau members in the newly released Cattle Markets Task Force Report.

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Cattle Markets Task Force

Nebraska Farm Bureau (NEFB) is pleased the Trump administration has instructed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to deny dozens of oil refiner requests for retroactive waivers from U.S. biofuel laws. The decision comes as NEFB has consistently opposed EPA’s attempts to circumvent Congress and its intent by granting Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) waivers over the past few years. In July, Nebraska Farm Bureau sent a letter asking the EPA to deny the waivers.

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A wide-ranging group of Nebraska agriculture organizations is urging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to move swiftly to re-register over-the-top, post-emergence dicamba products. Dicamba is a widely used crop protection product in Nebraska, but future access and use by farmers is dependent on EPA re-labeling dicamba products, as legal action forced the EPA to vacate the label for several dicamba products this past summer.

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Jefferson County Farm Bureau member David Endorf was distracted when he backed up his ATV over the edge of a dry creek. He dropped seven feet, hitting his head, shoulder, and hip. His leg was pinned beneath the overturned four-wheeler, and he had no way to get it off or get out. In a series of fortunate events, his damaged cellphone still worked, he was able to direct neighbors to his location, and he wasn’t seriously hurt. Endorf was lucky to be alive. Next week (Sept. 20-26) is National Farm Safety and Health Week. Statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate that the agricultural sector is still the most dangerous in America with 574 fatalities, or an equivalent of 23.4 deaths per 100,000 workers. Our members matter to us! Nebraska Farm Bureau reminds you and your family to be safe this harvest season.

Read David's Story

Learn More National Farm Safety Week

President Trump and Presidential candidate Joe Biden have both completed the American Farm Bureau Federation candidate questionnaire, check out their responses; Sen. Deb Fischer took to the floor of the Senate this week to urge her counterparts to act on reimbursement of funds to the Commodity Credit Corporation to ensure USDA can fulfill farm program obligations to farmers and ranchers, The University of Nebraska Clayton Yeutter Institute of International Trade and Finance is hosting a series of webinars through early October to dig deeper into the issues surrounding international trade; and drought conditions have triggered eligibility for the USDA Livestock Forage Program in 14 Nebraska counties. Read these stories in this week’s Policy Watch.

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Each year, Nebraska Farm Bureau (NEFB) holds a Policy Forum providing an opportunity for Farm Bureau members to provide background on agriculture policy ideas submitted by their County Farm Bureau for consideration as part of Nebraska Farm Bureau’s policy development process. NEFB will hold the 2020 Policy Forum November 19, in Kearney, at the Holiday Inn. Due to COVID-19, this year’s Forum will allow individuals to participate in-person (if allowed by local health department guidelines) or through an online/virtual option. Complete details will be forthcoming. Click the link below for more information on how this year’s Policy Forum will be a little bit different.

Mored Details

Chevy Silverado, Hay, grass, alfalfa, McCormick tractor, are among the listings this week on the Nebraska Farm Bureau Exchange, Nebraska Farm Bureau’s (NEFB) new online resource for members to buy, sell, or trade their items through free classified ads. Check out the NEFB Exchange today!

NEFB Exchange

Next Wednesday, Sept. 23 at 10:00 a.m. CT, the Nebraska Farm Bureau will co-host a virtual news conference with the Platte Institute to release a new report detailing the economic impact of COVID-19 on Nebraska agriculture. Presenters will include report authors Nebraska Farm Bureau Senior Economist Jay Rempe and Platte Institute Policy Director Sarah Curry.

Join Webinar Here

The Nebraska Farm Service Agency is reminding farmers and ranchers they have until Sept. 11 to sign-up for participation in the USDA Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP)

To learn more or apply for CFAP funding, click here.

Find your local USDA Service Center here.

Ag Secretary Visits Nebraska

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue was in Nebraska Sept. 4 to take part in a Shared Stewardship Agreement signing between the State of Nebraska and the USDA Forest Service. Perdue also participated in a University of Nebraska-Lincoln tour and discussion panel, as well as making stops at a Certified Piedmontese facility and a visit to the Food Bank for the Heartland.

Watch Perdue Remarks

Nebraska Farm Bureau is praising actions by Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen to lift long-standing restrictions on imports of U.S. beef and pork. The move will allow for Taiwan to set permissible ractopamine residue levels for imported pork and ease restrictions on the import of beef from U.S. cattle aged 30 months or older. U.S. agricultural products to Taiwan totaled $3.9 billion in 2018, making Taiwan the U.S. 8th largest agricultural export market. Leading exports to Taiwan include soybeans, corn, beef & beef products, and wheat.

NEFB tatement

Taiwan Announcement

Nebraska Farm Bureau recently hosted Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE 3rd) for a virtual town hall with Farm Bureau members. Smith touched on the latest happenings in Washington, D.C., coronavirus aid, agricultural trade issues, and numerous other topics. Missed Out? No problem! We’ve got you covered. View the video and catch up with the Congressman Smith!

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Farm Bureau leaders meet with the U.S. Chief Agriculture Negotiator; Agriculture Secretary Perdue visits Nebraska, the Nebraska Department of Agriculture launches a new branding program to promote Nebraska agriculture companies in international markets; China purchases of U.S. commodities still lagging; and USDA’s new “Highly Erodible Land and Wetlands” Rule falls short in treating farmers fairly. Read these stories in this week’s Policy Watch.

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As of Sept. 3, drought conditions in forty-one Nebraska counties have triggered eligibility requirements for Conservation Reserve Program Emergency Grazing and Haying. The U.S. Drought Monitor shows worsening drought conditions in the panhandle, southwest, south central and eastern and northeastern part of the state. For the first time this week, drought conditions triggered eligibility for four Nebraska counties (Burt, Douglas, Sioux, and Washington) to participate in USDA’s Livestock Forage Disaster Program. Those interested in the assistance through the programs must first contact their USDA Service Center to complete paperwork.

Farm Service Agency Drought Update

Nebraska Farm Drought Resources

According to AgriPulse, the USDA is expected to release rules for the second round of Coronavirus Food Assistance (CFAP) payments next week, just ahead of the Sept. 11 deadline to apply for the first round. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue told reporters payments will be designed to compensate farmers for losses incurred after April 15 through the end of the year. He also said that second round CFAP would go to the same commodities eligible in round one, while also noting this new round of assistance would address concerns among cattle producers that they weren’t compensated for post-April 15 losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Each year Nebraska Farm Bureau (NEFB) holds a Policy Forum providing an opportunity for Farm Bureau members to provide background on agriculture policy ideas submitted by their County Farm Bureau for consideration as part of Nebraska Farm Bureau’s policy development process. NEFB will hold the 2020 Policy Forum November 19, in Kearney, at the Holiday Inn. Due to COVID-19, this year’s Forum will allow individuals to participate in-person (if allowed by local health department guidelines) or through an online/virtual option. Complete details will be forthcoming. Click the link below for more information on how this year’s Policy Forum will be a little bit different.

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Have a thought, opinion, or idea on agriculture policy? Nebraska Farm Bureau wants to hear about it! That’s why we’ve developed an online space for Farm Bureau members to share their thoughts and opinions online, anytime, using our new digital “issue surfacing” tool. While not a replacement for Farm Bureau’s grassroots policy development process, ideas shared in the space will be reviewed by Farm Bureau staff and shared with local county leaders for future consideration as a policy recommendation. Grab your membership number, your digital device, log in here, and click the “submit” button to start sharing thoughts on issues affecting your farm or ranch today!

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Chevy Silverado, Hay, grass, alfalfa, McCormick tractor, are among the listings this week on the Nebraska Farm Bureau Exchange, Nebraska Farm Bureau’s (NEFB) new online resource for members to buy, sell, or trade their items through free classified ads. Check out the NEFB Exchange today!

NEFB Exchange

Is there such a thing as a boneless buffalo wing? This Nebraskan cries fowl at Lincoln City Council meeting.

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Governor Pete Ricketts signed LB 1107 into law this week. Nebraska Farm Bureau took part in the signing ceremony to commemorate a major step forward in efforts to provide meaningful and much needed property tax relief for Nebraskans. LB 1107 reflects the largest investment by the Legislature in targeted property tax relief since the body first established the state’s Property Tax Credit Fund in 2007. Nebraskans can expect to see a 15 percent reduction in the property taxes paid to schools when provisions are fully implemented.

Farm Bureau Exclusive: Watch the Full Interview with Gov. Ricketts.

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Sept. 11 Deadline – Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) Sign-Up

The USDA has announced it will extend the application deadline for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) to September 11, 2020. USDA has also announced producers with already-completed CFAP applications would be receiving the remaining 20 percent of their payment this week (FSA issued producers 80 percent of their estimated overall CFAP payment initially, holding back 20 percent in order to assure funding for all eligible applicants). Going forward, new CFAP applicants will receive the full payment benefit, up to the payment limitation, once their application is approved. Several commodities have also been added into CFAP, including some that would be applicable to Nebraska, such as sheep over two years of age, nursery crops, aquaculture, and some specific types of eggs (liquified and frozen).

To learn more or apply for CFAP funding, click here.
Find your local USDA Service Center here.

Nebraska Farm Bureau President has announced his plan to retire from service as president of Nebraska Farm Bureau effective at the end of his term which will occur at the Nebraska Farm Bureau annual meeting in December.

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When COVID-19 brought the 2020 legislative session to a halt in March, the prospects for tax relief and movement on other important agricultural issues seemed as hazy as a humid summer morning. Flash forward five months and Nebraska Farm Bureau is applauding passage of a major property tax relief measure and reflecting on a session that yielded several “wins” for ag.

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The U.S. Drought Monitor continues to show deteriorating conditions in parts of Nebraska. CRP Emergency Grazing and Haying has been approved in nearly one-third of Nebraska’s counties (Map HERE). Most have been approved under program triggers that include all or a part of a county entering a D2 status on the drought monitor. Please remember that once a county is approved, those who wish to use this option must first contact their USDA Service Center to complete paperwork, including an updated plan of conservation through NRCS. For more drought related resources, including information on USDA programs, visit Nebraska Farm Bureau’s Drought Resource page.

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Nebraska Farm Bureau congratulates Ansley Fellers who after four years as Nebraska Farm Bureau’s director of NEFB-PAC & state governmental relations, has taken a position as the executive director of the Nebraska Grocery Industry Association. Kathy Siefken is the current executive director and is retiring from the position after 27 years.

Reconnect with neighbors and friends at one of Nebraska Farm Bureau’s upcoming “Member Appreciation” nights. Meal provided, bring a friend, and win a John Deere generator.

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