The American Farmland Trust just sent me a few emails dealing with the Bush budget and some current proposals to slash conservation easements for farmers and ranchers. From one of the emails :
Faced with the need to reduce federal spending, President BushÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s proposed budget for 2006 calls for cuts to agriculture programs of $5.4 billion, including cutting commodity payment rates by 5 percent, over the next five years. Conservation programs for working farms and ranches were slashed by 31 percent, again making them take a disproportionate share of the cuts. AFT welcomes the AdministrationÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s initial efforts to reduce the deficit and reform subsidy programs but decries the cuts to conservation programs, which will result in dirtier water, more soil erosion, less wildlife habitat and less farmland protected.
If you are a farmer or rancher and would like to share your views about commodity payments and subsidies, or conservation easements, please leave a comment or send me an email, I’d like find out more about the subject, and how you feel about them.