Publications: Farm Programs/Farm Bill Resources
Farm Bill Conservation Programs: Swampbuster and Sodbuster
Scout Snowden Research Fellow, National Agricultural Law Center
Brigit Rollins Staff Attorney, National Agricultural Law Center
When Congress enacted the 1985 Farm Bill, it included the Conservation Reserve Program, which was intended, in part, to conserve highly erodible land and wetlands. Colloquially known as the “Sodbuster” and “Swampbuster” provisions, they require farmers to 1) maintain a minimum level of conservation on highly erodible land, and 2) not convert wetlands for crop production, all in return for keeping certain United States Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) benefits. The goal of the conservation provisions is to encourage conservation priorities by reducing the availability of certain USDA benefits to those who make specific land-use decisions. This article provides an overview of both programs, including history, policy and programmatic requirements. Download this article Posted: October 7, 2020
World Trade Organization and the Commodity Title of the Next Farm Bill: A Practitioner’s View
Doug O’Brien Senior Staff Attorney National Agricultural Law Center and Drake Agricultural Law Center
Traditionally, the major factors affecting the changes in a farm bill are the state of the farm economy, the condition of the federal budget, and who is in power in Congress at the time of the bill’s consideration. To be sure, all of these factors will again play a major role in the next farm bill. But an influence that has many times provided background context to farm bill deliberations is now up front and squarely facing policy makers: current and future trade policy. The impact of the Brazil Cotton Case has shifted current trade policy in a way that may force domestic policy to change. Further, the debate surrounding the next farm bill could very well coincide with the negotiations for the next major multi-lateral agricultural trade agreement, known as the World Trade Organization Doha Round. The timing both highlights and heightens the new significance that United States’ trade obligations have on domestic policy. This article examines how this new factor might influence Congress’ farm bill debate. Download this article Posted: April 26, 2006
Direct Payments and Counter-Cyclical Payments Under the 2002 Farm Bill: An Overview
Harrison M. Pittman Staff Attorney The National AgLaw Center
The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, commonly referred to as the 2002 Farm Bill, was enacted on May 13, 2002. It governs federal domestic commodity programs for the next six years and significantly alters previous legislation pertaining to domestic commodity programs. Under the 2002 Farm Bill, farm income support for wheat, corn, grain sorghum, barley, oats, upland cotton, rice, soybeans, and other oilseeds is provided through three programs: (1) direct payments, (2) counter-cyclical payments, (3) and loan deficiency payments and marketing loan gains. The 2002 Farm Bill significantly modifies the peanut payment program by changing it from a two-tier price support program based on nonrecourse loans to a payment program comprised of direct, counter-cyclical, and marketing loan provisions. This article discusses the direct payment and counter-cyclical payment programs for wheat, corn, grain sorghum, barley, oats, upland cotton, rice, soybeans, other oilseeds, and peanuts. Download this article. Posted: May 6, 2003.
The Conservation Security Program and the Grassland Reserve Program Under the 2002 Farm Bill
Harrison M. Pittman Staff Attorney The National Agricultural Law Center
The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, commonly referred to as the 2002 Farm Bill, created two new conservation programs, the Conservation Security Program (“CSP”) and the Grassland Reserve Program (“GRP”). The GRP and the CSP represent significant additions to the conservation programs available to farmers and ranchers. Because the regulations implementing the GRP and the CSP have not been issued, this summary covers only the statutory provisions for each program. Download this article. Posted: Apr. 1, 2003.
Introduction to Federal Farm Program Payment Limitation and Payment Eligibility Law
Christopher R. Kelley Associate Professor of Law University of Arkansas School of Law
This article provides an overview of the federal farm program payment limitation and payment eligibility rules. These rules are a cornerstone of the federal domestic commodity programs for they apply to most programs, including the most economically significant programs. In conjunction with the eligibility requirements specific to each program, these rules define who is eligible for program payments and set the payment limits. The rules discussed in this article are those in effect as of June 15, 2002. Included are the statutory changes made by the 2002 Farm Bill, the Farm Security and Rural Development Act of 2002. The regulations implementing the changes made by the 2002 Farm Bill, however, are not included because they had not been promulgated as of the date of this article. Download this article. Posted: July 24, 2002.