• According to a letter from the Department of Labor’s Assistant Secretary of the Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs Brian Kennedy, the department is going to update its guidance on grain bin safety enforcement.

    The letter was delivered to Nebraska Senator Mike Johanns. He had led a large group of Senators in a letter complaining that the department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration was enforcing regulations on small farms despite a 1976 law that exempted small farms from such regulation.

  • Washington Congressman Doc Hastings announced he will retire at the end of the year. He was elected to Congress in 1994 after having served 8 years in the state legislature.

    Hastings has been a strong supported of agriculture in the northwest. He currently serves as ranking member of the House Natural Resources Committee. And he says that even though he is retiring, his job is not yet done.

    Hastings added that over the coming year he intends to work as hard as ever on behalf of Central Washington and that there are a number of community priorities that he is dedicated to seeing achieved in the months ahead.