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Public Statements

Washington, Thursday, July 26, 2007

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

WASHINGTON, THURSDAY, JULY 26, 2007 -- (House of Representatives - July 26, 2007)


Mr. HOLDEN. Madam Chairman, I rise in opposition to the gentleman from Massachusetts' amendment.

What we tried to do in the subcommittee, Mr. Lucas and I, was try to see that access to credit was readily available in rural America, particularly in the agriculture sector. We tried to find a way to form a compromise between a Farm Credit System and the banking industry. We held hearings and brought them together, and we found out we had managed to anger both sides; so maybe we had a pretty good compromise.

The Farm Credit System in the HORIZONS project wanted to expand rural housing from 2,500 to 50,000. They wanted to expand on agriculture lending to agriculture-related businesses, a great diversion from where they are limited right now. And we thought that was too far, but we wanted to make sure there was access to credit in rural America, and we think we came up with a pretty good compromise.

In increasing the rural housing from 2,500 to 6,000, we are, all of us, not only in this committee, but this Congress, anxious to try to find ways to use renewable energy sources, and we believe that in this industry there is going to be a lack of credit. As the chairman of the full committee has said during this debate, he has noticed that in his home State of Minnesota. So we thought extending the credit to energy-related agriculture lending through the Farm Credit System was reasonable and responsible and something that was a good compromise.

So, Madam Chairman, we feel in the committee that we have come up with a pretty good compromise, something that is going to reflect the conditions in rural America, and something that we believe that is in the best interest of rural America and the agriculture community.

Madam Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.


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