New Proposals Give First Look at Next Farm Bill

House Agriculture Committee Chair G.T. Thompson and Senate Ag Chair Debbie Stabenow each released overviews of each committee’s version of the new farm bill this week.

Joe Gilson, director of government affairs for the American Farm Bureau Federation, talked about each release. He says, “Chairman Thompson released a five-page outline of his 2024 Farm Bill, and he also announced a House Agriculture Committee markup date of May 23. Moving to the Senate, Chairwoman Stabenow released a section by section of her farm bill, very substantial, clocking in at 94 pages. She has not indicated a date for a markup, but we’re looking over both overviews that were sent out and trying to read through them and what it means for the farm bill.”

He says both documents provide valuable insight into what the next farm bill may include. Gilson says, “Both overviews make large investments in Title One. We also see from Chairman Thompson’s bill will include provisions to prevent states from regulating animal welfare outside of their borders. In Chairman Stabenow’s bill, it does make conservation programs permanent. One thing she also wants to do is impose a $700,000 adjusted gross income limit for commodity program payments.”

Gilson says this month will be critical in determining what’s next in the process. He says, “The May 23 markup from the House Ag Committee, depending on how that goes, will determine what happens in this Congress in terms of the Farm Bill. If we get a solid bipartisan vote out of that committee, I think, it can move to the House floor and really put pressure on the Senate.”

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