New Funding for Food Safety; Immigration Reform Important Issue to Farmers
The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture is pleased with new funding levels for the Food Safety Modernization Act, though it remains concerned that the money stays available amid turnovers on Capitol Hill and in the White House. EPA needs to ensure its decisions related to bee health are based in science and not public opinion as states push ahead to put in place pollinator protection plans with the agency's guidance. When it comes to high-profile issues, like pesticides and bees, one official said “there is a tendency any time we get into an area like this to overreact.”
Hillary Clinton and Martin O'Malley did briefly mention immigration reform, one issue of importance to farmers, when asked on Sunday what they would do in their first 100 days in office. Clinton described it as an example of an issue that would require overcoming the divide between parties. O'Malley said "getting 11 million of our neighbors out of the underground shadow economy by passing comprehensive immigration reform" would be one of his top priorities. Bernie Sanders talked instead about lifting the minimum wage, while further reforming health care and taxes.