Grassley, Fortenberry urge Perdue to impose ‘effective’ payment limitations
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, who also serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee, and House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee ranking member Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., urged Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to make sure that individuals receiving farm payments are actively engaged in farming.
The 2018 farm bill’s “highly controversial addition of first cousins, nieces and nephews to the definition of family members need not turn into an even larger loophole that increases payments to passive investors and mega-farms,” Grassley and Fortenberry wrote.
“The farm safety net in this country was never intended to maximize government payments or cover every bushel of every commodity on every acre. The support programs are intended to provide support to working farmers to protect against low prices or yields and to provide enough support that if a farmer has a bad year, that farmer can survive to plant again the next year,” they added.
“We need an effective payment limit system, one in which each farm is subject to the same limitation, where paying lawyers and accountants to re-design farms to exploit regulatory loopholes in order to receive unlimited subsidies is not allowed.”