Representing one of the most productive farming regions in the country, I have worked hard on agriculture issues both in Wisconsin and in Washington. I believe that current agricultural policies are out of date and do not reflect the needs of the average Wisconsin farmer in today’s modern economy. This is why I have spent my time in Congress fighting to reform and modernize our agriculture policy.
Western Wisconsin is home to one of the largest dairy producing regions in the country. I have long believed that we need to forge a truly national dairy policy that stops pitting region against region. I have introduced a comprehensive plan to secure the future of the Wisconsin dairy industry. Read my full plan here(LINK).
Additionally, I have highlighted the promise and needs of organic agriculture by founding and co-chairing the Congressional Organic Caucus.
I have used my position on the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee to advocate for tax benefits to help family farmers thrive and innovate. I authored a Biogas Investment Tax Credit to encourage dairy producers to control their animal waste with the use of manure digesters while also producing renewable energy.
I continue to look for new ways to assist small and beginning farmers and those who produce renewable energy on the farm through tax incentives; to expand market opportunities abroad; and to provide access to an adequate labor supply through reform of the H-2B program.
More on Agriculture
Farm Bill 2018: Helping our Family Farms Grow
As discussions begin about the upcoming Farm Bill, I have been traveling around western and central Wisconsin to meet with farmers to hear what they would like to see addressed.
Our Wisconsin farmers brought up a number of pressing issues they are facing, including failing infrastructure, low milk prices, labor shortages, and problems with the Margin Protection Program.
U.S. Rep. Ron Kind met with United States Trade Representative, Ambassador Robert Lighthizer to discuss the ongoing NAFTA renegotiation and the impact leaving the agreement would have on Wisconsin’s dairy industry.
U.S. Rep. Ron Kind sent a letter to House leadership calling on them to increase funding for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development programs. President Trump’s budget proposal seeks to impose severe cuts to Rural Development programs.
In a recent report the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that insurance companies can earn hefty profits selling and servicing federal crop insurance policies, and USDA could reduce program costs by hundreds of millions of dollars by lowering the guaranteed profit insurance companies receive. Rep. Kind has been working with his Republican colleagues to change this unfair policy and shift away from a crop insurance system that helps powerful special interests at the expense of family farmers.
La Crosse, WI – Today, the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee, after at first proposing deep cuts, fully funded the Farm Service Agency loan programs. When the proposal to cut funding was announced, Rep. Kind successfully led a bipartisan coalition in pushing the committee to fully fund the program.
La Crosse, WI – Today, U.S. Rep. Ron Kind sent a letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, and Acting Trade Representative Vaughn requesting that by May 1st, when the Grassland contracts expire, they create a plan to address the situation. The plan should address the immediate impact of the Grassland’s Dairy decision and create a strategy to end the unfair trade practices at the root of the current problem.
La Crosse, WI – Today, U.S. Rep. Ron Kind sent a letter to the Acting Secretary at the U.S. Department of Agriculture urging him to take immediate action to assist Wisconsin dairy farmers who are negatively impacted by Grassland Dairy Product’s decision to stop purchasing their milk. Grassland Dairy’s action was taken due to protectionist Canadian trade policies restricting American dairy exports in violation of their trade commitments to the United States.
Village of Merrillan, WI – Today, U.S. Rep. Ron Kind announces that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development has awarded the Village of Merrillan a grant to assist in funding for Village departmental needs. The funds from the grant will be used for an enclosed mower with snow removal equipment, a new police squad vehicle, and a used fire engine.
Village of Muscoda, WI – Today, U.S. Rep. Ron Kind applauded the announcement from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development that the Village of Muscoda will receive a Community Facility Direct Loan to assist in the construction and development of a new public library. The funding will create more space for children’s programs, handicap accessibility, and an expanded large-print and audio media section.