Discussions. Hearings. Policy meetings. These are some of the ways Farm Credit West, together with other Western associations, stays actively involved in legislative and regulatory issues at the state and national levels. Our role varies on each issue – from grassroots actions to coalition building and lobbying efforts. However, it is our policy to take a proactive role only on issues directly impacting Farm Credit and our ability to meet our customer's needs. With respect to other topics, we encourage the impacted organizations (Farm Bureau, various commodity groups, etc.) to take the lead while we provide financial and informational support.
Our government affairs department regularly meets with national and state legislators, supports letter-writing campaigns to policy makers, participates in and provides coalition group support, offers farm tours for congressional staff, and testifies at relevant hearings.
How we work
The most important role we play is that of a comprehensive, reliable source of information about Western agriculture. We coordinate information with general farm organizations and cooperatives to support issues, such as:
- Budget proposals that strengthen agriculture's competitive position
- Regulatory reforms to reduce our costs and allow us to serve the emerging needs of our members
- Expansion of Farm Credit's role in financing agriculture, farm-related businesses and other rural homeowners and businesses
- Crop insurance program reforms
- Tax changes, such as estate tax relief and local property tax reductions
- Fair implementation of the Food Quality Protection Act
- Inclusion of agriculture and Farm Credit in economic development programs at the state level
- Fair implementation of the Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) by the Environmental Protection Agency