Lincoln, NE (June 29, 2018) – Nebraska Cattlemen (NC) President Galen Frenzen issued the following statement in response to the U.S. Senate’s passage of the 2018 farm bill.
“Nebraska Cattlemen is extremely pleased with yesterday’s vote on the Senate farm bill. Thanks to the support of Senators Deb Fischer and Ben Sasse, livestock producers have a bipartisan bill with important wins for both livestock producers and the at-large agricultural community,” Galen Frenzen, Nebraska Cattlemen President.
NC would like to thank both Senators Deb Fischer and Ben Sasse for fighting for the priorities of Nebraska’s livestock producers, including:
1) Defeat of Lee/Booker amendment
Despite attempts from opponents to permanently damage the Beef Checkoff, Senators Fischer and Sasse voted to preserve the rights of Nebraska’s farmers and ranchers. The Lee/Booker amendment, which was strongly supported by HSUS and other extreme animal rights groups, was soundly defeated thanks to the help of Nebraska’s U.S. Senators.
2) Introduction of livestock hauler amendments
Senator Deb Fischer introduced a bipartisan amendment to include an extra 150 air-mile exemption on the back end of a trip for all agricultural haulers, and to eliminate the seasonality component of when certain exemptions apply. Senator Ben Sasse introduced his bipartisan Transporting Livestock Across America Safely Act, which would redefine federal hours of service regulations for livestock haulers. Unfortunately, neither amendment received a vote; however, the introduction of various proposals from both Nebraska senators illustrates the importance of the issue to the state’s livestock industry.
3) Authorization of the National Animal Vaccine and Veterinary Countermeasures Bank
The Senate farm bill prioritizes the maintenance of a sufficient quality of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) vaccines. Analysts estimate that a widespread FMD outbreak in the United States would cost the taxpayer and livestock producers billions of dollars in the first year alone. Authorization of a vaccine bank is a crucial first step toward protecting our nation’s livestock producers and safeguarding our economy.