Nebraska's farmers disappointed with Washington - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

Nebraska's farmers disappointed with Washington

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By: Jenn Schanz
jschanz@klkntv.com

"I think what the question will be is to how long this thing lasts, and that's when you may see an impact depending upon on how it does last."

Jordan Dux, Director of National Affairs for the Nebraska Farm Bureau, says government shutdown's impact on farmers is all about timing.

If the shutdown continues for a long period of time, crop insurance will be affected. It's filed through Risk Management, a federal agency.

For farmers whose corn crops were hurt by recent droughts, an extended shutdown could mean big trouble.

But Dux says there's a bigger picture farmers are concerned about—it's Congress' inability to problem solve.

"Farmers and ranchers have some concern with the way Congress is headed, and not just partisanship but also with the fact that Congress has been unable to move important pieces of legislation."

That legislation would be the Farm Bill.

The same day of the partial government shutdown, it expired.

As long as a new bill isn't agreed upon, some of the federal programs under it will be shut down too.

To get a new Farm Bill passed, the House and Senate will have to agree on a single piece of legislation.

They're not there yet, but Congressman Lee Terry says it's getting close.

"It's sitting over in the Senate, the House version is sitting in the Senate. All they need to do is a couple of procedural things which the Senate Chairman Deb Stabenow said they could probably have done by the end of the week," the Congressman says.

Congressman Jeff Fortenberry says the Farm Bill is vital to rural America, and that it should be at the top of the "must pass" list in the next 30 days.

But with Washington closed, Dux says farmers are hoping the shutdown is over soon, so lawmakers can get back to work, and back to the drawing board.

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