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House subcommittee approves commodity title extension

Agriculture.com Staff 06/19/2007 @ 12:21pm

A House Agriculture subcommittee took up the task of marking up the commodity title for the 2007 farm bill Tuesday on Capitol Hill.

The end result of Tuesday's subcommitee leadership meeting has a ring of familiarity to it: Subcommittee members voted to extend the commodity title as it appeared in the 2002 farm bill with a few minor amendments, namely an effort to equalize posted county prices for corn and sorghum.

Others include changes in rice and cotton program categories as well as the implementation of a pilot program to allow program-crop growers in Indiana to raise canning tomatoes without losing base acres.

One source close to the proceedings told Agriculture Online the support for an extension of the existing commodity title is grounded in differences over how to proceed: Republican members of the subcommittee, according to the source, didn't want to take money from the existing direct payment program in order to fund other commodity title programs, an effort supported by subcommittee democrats.

Citing those differences, the subcommittee eventually unanimously voted to extend the commodity title as it appeared in the 2002 farm bill. However, it is thought the legislation has slim chances of reaching a final draft of the 2007 bill, as the full House Ag Committee will vote on it in around two weeks, likely voting down such an extension.

"This is not everything. There will be additional changes in the commodity title," Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN), chairman of the House Ag Committee, said of Tuesday's hearing late last week. "What you see here is not the final thing. We're still working through some of the scoring. I don't want anyone to think this is a final decision."

A House Agriculture subcommittee took up the task of marking up the commodity title for the 2007 farm bill Tuesday on Capitol Hill.

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