~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Wednesday April 23, 2008!A service of National Livestock Credit, KIS Futures and American Farmers & Ranchers.
-- Conference Committee Meets in the Shadow of a Strongly Worded Presidential Veto Threat.
-- President Bush Questions Progress in Farm Bill Debate- Wants Extension of 2002 Law.
-- Ag Futures Markets Are Broke and Need Fixing-
-- Measure That Would Study Using Flood Waters as a Reserve Signed Into Law.
-- A Hundred Thousand Dollar Payday for Oklahoma FFA Winners!
-- Petition Filed: No Nonambulatory Livestock in Food Chain
-- Express Ranches Extra Value Grass Time Sale Set For May Second.
-- Checking the Markets...
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are proud to have KIS Futures as a regular sponsor of our daily E-Mail. KIS Futures provides Oklahoma Farmers & Ranchers with futures & options hedging services in the livestock and grain markets- Click here for their "new look" website or call them at 1-800-256-2555.
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Conference Committee Meets in the Shadow of a Strongly Worded Presidential Veto Threat.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Senate made a counteroffer to the House last Friday- and the Chairman of the House Ag Committee, Colin Peterson, told the Senators yesterday afternoon that the House has no answer to the Senate on their latest offer. During the late Tuesday afternoon Conference Committee session, little business was accomplished as the tax writing Leadership- Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baccus and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charlie Rangel both promised to keep working on a funding deal- and then left to have private discussions.
The award for the most upbeat person of the day goes to Senator Kent Conrad who raved about the progress of the last twenty four hours. Conrad said that there had been more progress in the last twenty four hours than there had been the last six weeks- specifically claiming that movement was being seen on the tax credits issue.
We got an email from Terry Detrick last night after the latest session was finished- and he was not pleased with the President's threats- and felt that there were positive "vibes" coming from the tax writing principles including Charley Rangel of the Ways and Means Committee, who Detrick quoted as saying that being so close to an agreeement now- it would be a "disservice to the country" to not be allowed to finish the job. The AFR Vice President, who continues to monitor the proceedings in person in Washington adds this bottom line- "Let's hope they are successful and it's not "back to the future" with a long term extension. On the other hand, we can't afford to give away the farm just for the sake of making a deal."
We talked right after the Tuesday afternoon session with Oklahoma Congressman Frank Lucas who serves on the Conference- and he thought the Presidential Statement was significant and could push us closer to either permanent law or a one to two year extension- as Congressman Lucas is dubious that the Democrats will be able to quickly solve their differences internally. We have our conversation with Congressman Lucas linked below- take a listen.
Click here to listen to Ron and Congressman Frank Lucas on Farm Bill Developments.
President Bush Questions Progress in Farm Bill Debate- Wants Extension of 2002 Law.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~On Tuesday Afternoon- a Presidential Statement was issued on the White House website- calling on Congress to Consider at least a one year extension of current farm law. The statement reads as follows:
"I am disappointed that Congress has failed to put forward a good farm
bill, leaving farmers and ranchers in a state of continued uncertainty as
to how they will be affected by Federal policies.
"After last week's short-term extension of the farm bill, Congress now has only four days to provide certainty to America's farmers and ranchers. Despite the passage of more than a year since my Administration unveiled a responsible and forward-looking farm bill proposal, there are no signs that the conference committee will reach agreement on an acceptable farm bill by Friday. I therefore call on Congress to provide our agricultural producers with the certainty to make sound business and planting decisions about this year's crop by extending current law for at least one year. "
For all of our coverage on the Farm Bill Debate- check in from time to time on our FarmBill 2007 Webpage- linked here.
Ag Futures Markets Are Broke and Need Fixing-
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Record volume and incredible volatility worries a lot of agricultural leaders that appeared at the Ag Futures Roundtable, hosted by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission on Tuesday. Cotton Merchant Billy Dunavent, Jr. called the cotton futures market broken because of the artificial forces that can grab prices and move them with supersonic speeds up or down.
Meanwhile, both American Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman and National Farmers Union President Tom Buis said that the huge volume and wide swings of the market have made those traditional ag commodity futures of less usefulness to average farmers and ranchers.
Stallman pointed out that many grain elevators have had trouble offering forward contracting options that they have provided to producers in the past because of the huge margin calls they have faced when the markets spike. We have the comments of both Bob Stallman and Tom Buis linked together as they spoke from a farmers perspective midday yesterday at that Ag Futures Roundtable- go to the link below and take a listen.
Click here for the comments by Bob Stallman and Tom Buis on the changing Ag Futures Marketplace.
Measure That Would Study Using Flood Waters as a Reserve Signed Into Law.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~A bill by State Senator Susan Paddack and State Rep. Wes Hilliard that enhances the future of the state's water supply has been signed into law by Governor Brad Henry. Senate Bill 1410 passed both the Senate and the House with overwhelmingly bi-partisan support and is amongst the first bills signed into law this legislative session.
Paddack explained provisions of SB 1410 allows the Oklahoma Water Resource Board (OWRB) to conduct pilot studies to answer tough questions about using flood waters to offset droughts by creating management strategies for mitigating floods and recharge aquifers at the same time.
Hilliard said the bill also directs the Water Resource Board to establish a technical work group to recommend demonstration projects and criteria to prioritize other projects designed to recharge various types of aquifers located in this state. Hilliard said given the complex nature of the issue of water use, the bill directs the OWRB to include all appropriate state agencies, including the Oklahoma State Climatologist, Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality and the Oklahoma Conservation Commission to ensure the pilot projects created through SB 1410 are conducted in a way that is protective of Oklahoma's water resources, the environment and the rights and needs of downstream users.
A Hundred Thousand Dollar Payday for Oklahoma FFA Winners!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We have just received the list of the 2008 National FFA Foundation scholarship recipients from Oklahoma- and there are a bunch of them. A total of 92 Oklahoma FFA members received a scholarship from the National FFA Foundation for a grand total of $100,000 awarded here in 2008.
The biggest donor of these scholarships was far and away the Ford Motor Company and Oklahoma Ford Dealers- with Ford kicking in $66,000 of the one hundred grand presented.
We have the full list of 92 winners from our state linked below- Congrats to all of these outstanding young people as they prepare for their collegiate careers.
Click here for the full list of 2008 Oklahoma Scholarship Winners from the National FFA Foundation!
Petition Filed: No Nonambulatory Livestock in Food Chain
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The American Meat Institute, the National Meat Association and the National Milk Producers Federation have jointly filed a Citizen Petition with the United States Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service. The organizations are requesting the agency amend the rules so that nonambulatory, disabled cattle are not permitted into the meat supply in any circumstance. Presently, rules authorize a public health veterinarian to allow, in limited circumstances, cattle that become non- ambulatory after passing ante-mortem inspection to enter the food supply.
The petition references the benefits and efficiencies that can be gleaned from eliminating the need to have a public health veterinarian come out to reexamine an animal. The requested change also will benefit U.S trade negotiators as they attempt to reopen beef markets that have been closed for far too long.
Also, AMI and NMA have pledged to encourage companies to engage in a voluntary moratorium regarding the slaughter and processing of such non- ambulatory cattle until FSIS has promulgated a final rule affecting the requested change.
Express Ranches Extra Value Grass Time Sale Set For May Second.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Express Ranch Family have a new sale they are adding into their annual cycle- their first "Extra Value Grass Time Sale." It's set for Friday May second at the ranch in Yukon, Oklahoma- and they will be offering over 600 head of Angus and Limousin cattle. The sale happens on Friday, May 2 at 12:30 PM Central time.
Bob Funk and Jarold Callahan mention in their "welcome" in the sale catalog that "Included in our Grass Time Sale will be both Angus and Limousin pairs, 50 commercial pairs, 110 fall bred commercial females, and 130 fancy, commercial heifers bred to Northern Improvement, 263C and 1407. We also will be selling over 100 Angus bulls with a select few of these being 2-year-olds."
We have a link to the Express Ranch site on our calendar page at WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com- or you can jump straight to their site with the link we are providing below. If you prefer to call for a catalog- the best number to use is 405-350-0044 or toll free 1- 800-664-3977.
Click here for more on the May Second Sale Planned by Express Ranches of Yukon.
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Checking the Markets...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Soybeans Soared- Corn was up along with significant gains in the Cotton contracts- while the Chicago and KC wheat contracts were mixed to a little higher- all this in the Tuesday day trade.
Meanwhile, crude oil futures got within ten cents of hitting $120 per barrel on the New York market.
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