Jan. 26, 2018 – -USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue this week announced the USDA’s Farm Bill and Legislative Principles for 2018.
The Farm Bill outline — described by the administration as a statement of principles — is meant to guide legislation proposed in Congress, Perdue said in an interview with Bloomberg News. The White House is ready to get more deeply involved if lawmakers veer far from the administration’s approach, Perdue added. “You will see more of an evolution than a revolution” in this year’s law, Perdue said. “There are some things that we can do and will propose to do in the farm bill that can be helpful.”
In a press release announcing the statement of principles, Perdue said, “Since my first day as the Secretary of Agriculture, I’ve traveled to 30 states, listening to the people of American agriculture about what is working and what is not. The conversations we had and the people we came across helped us craft USDA’s Farm Bill and Legislative Principles for 2018. These principles will be used as a road map – they are our way of letting Congress know what we’ve heard from the hard-working men and women of American agriculture. While we understand it’s the legislature’s job to write the Farm Bill, USDA will be right there providing whatever counsel Congress may request or require.”
President Trump told the American Farm Bureau Federation earlier this months that he’d work with Congress “to pass the farm bill on time so that it delivers for all of you.”
Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts, a Kansas Republican and House Agriculture Committee Chairman Michael Conaway, a Texas Republican, have both said they’d like a bill in their chambers early this year. Neither has revealed a plan.