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Crop Insurance In Jeopardy as Congress Debates
IOWA CITY, IA (CBS2/FOX28) As farmers get closer to harvesting their crops, Congress is stuck in the mud on passing a new Farm Bill.
Really not any different than what's been happening with really about everything else in Washington D.C, said Iowas 2nd District Representative David Loebsack. Right now, that's a big nothing."
The clock is ticking. The Farm Bill extension runs out on September 30 and representatives wont begin hashing out their differences on a new Farm Bill until the beginning of that month. Its likely that theyll reach a compromise just in time, but it doesnt leave much room for error.
"We got just a few days to get this thing done, says Minnesota 7th District Representative Collin Peterson. And something could go wrong."
That Washington gridlock puts important parts of the Farm Bill, that Iowa farmers need, in jeopardy, like crop insurance.
"The crop insurance program is probably the best risk management tool that row crop farmers have in the country, said local farmer Nick Podhajski.
One example is 2012. Farmers say it was one of the worst droughts theyve faced in history.
But there wasn't a call for farm assistance or bailouts or any of the rest of it, said Iowa Corn Growers Associate Executive Officer Roger Zylstra. That was strictly due to the crop insurance program."
If Congress cant work out a new bill, and not just an extension of the old one, uncertainty would follow.
What we stand to lose is a certain amount of stability that we need in our food production system, said Zylstra
"A five-year Farm Bill. That's what we have to have to provide them stability, security so that they know what's coming down the road for them, said Rep. Loebsack.
For now, all farmers can do is watch Congress.