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Minnesota Public Radio - House Unveils its Five-Year Farm and Food Bill

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Location: Washington, DC

By Brett Neely

U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., on Thursday unveiled a bipartisan farm bill in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The legislation revealed by Peterson and Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., offers deeper cuts to subsidy and food stamp programs than the Senate's bill.

Overall, the House bill plans to cut spending by about $35 billion over the next decade compared with $23 billion in the Senate version. Almost half the cuts would come from the federal food stamp program.

Peterson said the House farm bill will offer farmers greater access to government-subsidized crop insurance.

But farmers will also continue to have access to a program that sets a floor for crop prices.

"We want a system that if prices are good, then you know, we don't want the government paying people," Peterson says. "If there's a yield problem, they've got crop insurance."

The House Agriculture Committee will consider the bill next week. Timing for full House action is uncertain.

The two chambers must reach a compromise on the five-year legislation before the current farm bill expires at the end of September.


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