National Cattlemen’s Beef Association

National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) President Scott George, a beef and dairy producer from Cody, Wyo., issued the following statement on the passage of the legislation:

“First, we thank House Agriculture Committee Chairman Lucas of Oklahoma, who in this very difficult environment produced a farm bill that passed out of the House and continues the process toward providing farmers and ranchers the certainty they need.

“Passage of a 2013 farm bill is the top priority for NCBA, and today the House took the unprecedented step in separating the nutrition title from the farm bill, and passing a bill that only encompasses agriculture. This step is a major departure from the usual business of agricultural policy, but I am pleased that cattlemen and women are one step closer toward final legislation which not only provides certainty for producers, but also incorporates priorities important to the cattle industry.

“We are very pleased that this legislation includes disaster programs for our producers, which will extend disaster assistance for five years and retroactively covers losses in 2012 and 2013.

“The legislation authorizes conservation programs important to cattle producers as a tool to leverage private dollars with some federal support to further protect the land and natural resources. It contains language to prevent the United States Department of Agriculture from moving forward on the proposed GIPSA rule from the 2008 farm bill.

“There are also important amendments included in the legislation which rein in the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These amendments provides regulatory relief to cattle producers, prevent EPA from releasing producers’ personal information to third parties such as environmental activist groups and prohibit EPA from regulating forest roads under the Clean Water Act (CWA).

“NCBA appreciates the efforts of Chairman Frank Lucas, Ranking Member Collin Peterson of Minnesota and their committee members who worked in a bipartisan fashion to pass a bill out of the Agriculture Committee. We will continue to work with the House and Senate conferees to ensure the final bill meets the priorities of America’s cattle industry.”