Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) issued the following statement today after the House finished voting without passing a Farm Bill or an extension before the current bill expires on September 30, 2012.
"I am extremely disappointed in Congress' failure to pass a Farm Bill or an extension before the current legislation expires at the end of the month. Both parties own this failure, and we owe it to America to find common ground. While there will not be any immediate lapse in farm policy for our producers, the unwillingness to get something done only adds to the long list of decisions which must be made after the election.
"When Congress reconvenes in November, it is urgent we come to an agreement on responsible long-term farm policy to allow producers the tools they need to effectively manage risk."
The previous five-year Farm Bill expired on September 30, 2007, and an extension was passed December 26, 2007. The current Farm Bill was signed into law after six short-term extensions.
The House-passed Continuing Resolution funds most programs covered by the Farm Bill through March 27, 2013, including the crop insurance program and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps).
A number of mandatory programs authorized by the Farm Bill need to be reauthorized to preserve their budgetary baselines. Commodity programs will not be impacted immediately because the 2008 Farm Bill will cover the 2012 harvest.