Three Forks Voice: Tester discusses Family Farm and Small Business Exemption Act

by Jack H. Smith

In an effort to make sure Montana farm families and small business owners aren’t paying higher costs to send their children to college, U.S. Senator Jon Tester and colleagues from both sides of the aisle introduced the Family Farm and Small Business Exemption Act.

In a rural press call last week, Tester said as a farmer, he can say that one fit size policies don’t work for Montana’s rural communities, and that’s why he introduced a bill that will make sure Montana farmers and ranchers don’t have to pay a higher price to send their kids to college.

According to Tester, the act will restore the exemptions that used to exist for family farmland and small businesses from being declared as available assets on the FAFSA application.

“This adjustment will help the farmers and small business owners qualify for financial aid if they need it,” he said.


In Washington D.C. last week, Tester questioned national housing experts on solutions for the affordable housing crisis in rural America.

Tester pressed experts on solutions to the affordable housing crisis in rural America. During the hearing, Tester questioned witnesses from the NeighborWorks Association, the Cato Institute, and the National Low Income Housing Coalition. He also solicited solutions that work specifically for rural communities.

“Everywhere I go in Montana, I hear about the lack of affordable housing,” Tester said after the hearing. “It’s killing rural America, and it’s driving folks out of the communities they’ve lived in their whole lives,” said Tester. “Too often, one-size-fits-all policies from Washington don’t work for Montana, and that’s why it’s critical we work with folks on the ground on solutions that actually work to increase affordable housing supply in our rural communities.”

Tester discusses Family Farm and Small Business Exemption Act – Three Forks Voice