Kentucky Farm Bureau 2015 National Priority Issues
• Farm labor programs should be more reflective of the unique nature of agricultural production. Within the H-2A program we support U.S. Department of Labor approval of joint contracts among farmers, staggered dates of worker entry under a single contract, and the 50 percent rule requirement for hiring domestic workers being limited to the number of visas approved.
• Support reform of the H-2A program to streamline the process making it more reliable, economical and simple for farmers to participate. Reforms should include moving from Adverse Effect Wage Rate (AEWR) to an agriculture prevailing wage.
• Oppose EPA exceeding legislative authority in the implementation of the Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act programs. (CAFO permitting, TMDL, Hypoxia, Animal Waste, Pesticide NPDES permits, Air Quality & particulate matter, etc.)
• Support development of additional water resources for agricultural use.
• All regulations should be based on sound, peer-reviewed scientific data that can be replicated.
• Support congressional oversight of federal agency regulatory actions to ensure rules and regulations do not exceed the intent and authority of federal law.
• Support comprehensive, affordable health care for all U.S. citizens with reforms to present law that will address the rising costs of health care.
• Support changes to current health care law that will stabilize the market, encourage competition and increase consumer choice.
• In order to protect the future integrity of our nation’s economy it is in our best interest to address budget deficits, which erode our ability to remain fiscally stable with the goal of reaching a balanced budget.
• Support the Section 179 small business expensing limit of $500,000, indexed for inflation and 50 percent bonus depreciation being made permanent in tax code.
• Support a producer’s right to protect livestock and property against nuisance wildlife predation. Producers should not have to obtain a federal permit to protect livestock from predation by black vulture, coyotes, wolves, etc.
• Federal agencies should pursue alternative means to address endangered species concerns such as establishment of voluntary critical habitats based on the species current habitat range and sound science. Where farming practices are impacted due to critical habitat designation, farmers should be fairly compensated.
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