Safety Net, EATS Act among Farm Bill Priorities for Rouzer

Rep. David Rouzer (NC-7)

Republican Congressman David Rouzer from North Carolina’s Seventh District told Agri-Pulse he has a lot of producer-centric priorities heading into the Farm Bill writing process.

Strengthening that safety net. And of course when we do our visits all around the country, our ag Farm Bill listening sessions, adjusting that reference price is seems to be a strong consensus point among farm families all around the country. And so I think there’s gonna be great emphasis, you know, on that thing, a number of members have a number of different, you know, items that they would like to like to see included in the Farm Bill, but the basic structure in terms of preserving crop insurance enhancing the crop insurance products that are out there and the safety net that’s out there, I think that’s, that’s the main focus and that’s where the additional dollars you know, are gonna get

Rouzer co-sponsored the EATS Act in the House, that would override California’s Prop 12. Now that law prohibits the sale of pork and some other meats that were grown out of accordance with California’s housing standards, regardless of where it’s produced, but the EATS Act has met with opposition, both on the far left and the far right.

You know, the one thing I would say and I would find it hard to disagree with this, is if a farmer is complied with all permitting, all regulatory issues, good farming practices, etc., There ought to be some legal safe harbor there, so to speak, and where, you know, they can sell their product in any state, you know, in the union. I definitely think there’s a interstate commerce issue there. Obviously, the Supreme Court, you know, looked at it a little bit differently. And of course, in North Carolina, we’ve experienced, you know, we’re a trial lawyers come in, and they try to take down key industry segments. And so part of my viewpoint is based on that experience in North Carolina, you know, as well, but hopefully we can, we can come up with a bipartisan solution there that’s incorporated in the Farm Bill. My assumption is, and I know the chairman is committed to, having a bipartisan bill come out of the committee, once it comes out of the committee and hits the floor. We’ll see what happens. And particularly if it’s an open rule, and anybody can offer any amendment, it may very well go the way of the NDAA which came out very bipartisan out of committee, when it hit the floor, a lot of poison pill amendments ended up being adopted, and so it ended up being more of a partisan vote. A farm bill may take a similar track, but the key is to get something out of the house so that we have something to negotiate with the Senate on.

EPA has recently released a revised Waters of the US rule to be in compliance with the Supreme Court’s recent SEC decision. Can the House come up with a law to finalize what is a water of the US?

Yeah, well, there’s a pretty strong divide, you know, in Congress on what a Waters of the US should be. Most of us on the Republican side, the conservative side that represent the vast majority of planted acres all around the country, I might add, are very much in tune with the Scalia version of what that WOTUS definition should look like. Obviously, the Sackett decision we felt was a very, very good move, very positive outcome. The new rule that is in effect now complies with the bare minimum that the Supreme Court ruling put in place, but I think there’s still a great deal of ambiguity and with respect to some aspects of it.