Tester hails Farm Bill passage

Senator: ‘After too many fits and starts, farmers and ranchers finally have the long-term bill they need’

(U.S. SENATE) – Montana farmer and Senator Jon Tester today released the following statement after the Senate passed the bipartisan, five-year Farm Bill by a vote of 68 to 32:

“After too many fits and starts, Montana farmers and ranchers finally have the long-term Farm Bill they need. This is a responsible bill that supports production agriculture, saves taxpayers billions and lets our farmers and ranchers plan for the future. I will continue to support Montana’s hard-working producers that put food on our plates and drive our state’s number one industry.”

The Farm Bill includes numerous Tester priorities, including extending Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) through 2014, strong and permanent livestock disaster assistance programs, support for beginning farmers and ranchers, and savings of $23 billion. The legislation also includes provisions to protect prime hunting and fishing habitat.

Tester, a third-generation dry-land farmer, led efforts to preserve strong Country-of-Origin Labeling (COOL) rules in the bill, helping consumers know where meat was born, raised and processed and giving them the option to buy U.S.-made meat if they choose.

The President is expected to quickly sign the bill into law. The new Farm Bill will expire in 2018.