Iowa Farm Bureau Voting Delegates Set State and National Policy Direction for 2020
Iowa Farm Bureau members met in West Des Moines this week to develop the legislative policy direction on issues important to its statewide membership.
The grassroots farm organization’s voting delegates engaged in lively discussions over the two-day conference on several issues, particularly the two issues weighing heaviest on Iowa farmers’ minds—international trade and implementing the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) as it was written, opposing the abuse of exemptions which devastate domestic demand for Iowa-grown crops.
Delegates approved policy reaffirming the expansion of broadband and identifying and prioritizing rural connectivity in underserved areas. Members strongly feel rural connectivity is crucial to the vitality of rural communities and rural-based businesses.
“Broadband access is a vital link for farmers, rural businesses, education, and healthcare to remain competitive,” said Mark Riesselman of Crawford County.
Members showed their support for Iowa’s livestock farmers and passed policy encouraging programs and incentives to maintain the availability of private practice food animal veterinarians to work with livestock farmers.
“The Iowa Farm Bureau Federation’s (IFBF) annual Summer Policy Conference is the culmination of our year-round policy development process and provides our organization with a clear direction on policy for the upcoming year,” says IFBF President Craig Hill. “IFBF’s policy development process is truly grassroots with active engagement, participation, and input from members in each county, providing members an opportunity to be heard. This process ensures a strong and unified voice on behalf of our membership to support Iowa agriculture, farm families and their communities, particularly during these challenging times.”
The IFBF Summer Policy Conference is the final step of the year-round grassroots policy process in each of the 100 county Farm Bureaus across the state and leads the organization’s policy direction for the upcoming year. National policies are subject to debate during American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) policy discussions, which will take place at the AFBF Annual Convention in Austin, Texas, January 17-22, 2020.