Iowa Farm Bureau Federation (IFBF), the state’s largest grassroots farm organization, will address key priorities of protecting landowners and property taxpayers, the modernization of the state’s Grain Indemnity Fund and other important policies impacting Iowa’s farmers and rural communities during the 2024 legislative session.

Throughout the past year, Farm Bureau members from every county provided input on policy important to Iowa agriculture. Critical issues were voted on and prioritized to shape the organization's efforts for the 2024 Iowa legislative session. 

IFBF applauds the legislature for recent successes on property tax reform and encourages seeking additional opportunities to provide property tax relief.  As tax reform continues to be a focus in Iowa, members strongly support efforts to slow the growth of property taxes.  Other property taxpayer protection policies include the state continuing to fund the Homestead Property Tax Credit and Ag Land/Family Farm Tax credits and rejecting proposals to change credits into exemptions.  

Farm Bureau members have also identified landowner protections as a 2024 legislative priority.  When constructing large infrastructure projects, such as transmission lines and pipelines, members have stated Iowa law should adequately protect landowner rights prior to approval and after construction is complete.  Currently, there is no voluntary easement threshold before projects may be granted eminent domain authority, and members have called for reaching a minimum 90% voluntary easement threshold prior to large infrastructure projects being granted eminent domain authority.

Farm Bureau will also work toward the modernization of the Grain Indemnity Fund to adequately protect farmers affected by a grain elevator failure through no fault of their own.  The Grain Indemnity Fund is a participant-funded safety net and an important risk management tool for farmers, but efforts are needed to adequately reflect modern grain prices and crop production.  Among neighboring states with an indemnification fund, Iowa has the smallest fund level and is the only state not covering credit sale contracts, which represent nearly 40% of commercial sales in the state.  

While Iowa has some of the nation’s strongest laws restricting foreign farmland ownership, Farm Bureau looks forward to working with the Governor and legislature on efforts to enhance transparency and enforcement.