Key Legislation Seeing Movement at State and Federal Level

This week has been an extremely busy one for agriculture, as Farm Bureau is tracking several bills at the state and federal level, including a package of crop damage bills and the U.S. Farm Bill.

The U.S. House Agriculture & Rural Affairs Committee held a Farm Bill markup on Thursday. After 13 hours of debate, the Farm, Food and National Security Act reported out of committee for House consideration. Farm Bureau urges House leaders to continue its momentum to bring it to a vote on the floor.

We also urge the Senate Agriculture Committee to follow the lead of the house by scheduling a farm bill markup. The farm bill affects all of America’s families and we’re encouraged to see the legislation move forward.

The state House Game and Fisheries Committee held a voting meeting on May 22nd on Rep. Mandy Steele’s House Bills 2106, 2107 and 2108.

The package of bills is intended to begin to mitigate the issue of crop damage and other wildlife issues affecting farmers across Pennsylvania.

The bills include stricter trespass penalties, streamlined deer carcass removal, ensures at least one game commissioner meets the definition of a farmer, adds a database of good-standing hunters for farmers to contact and removes the restrictions on Sunday hunting. The bills passed out of committee for house consideration yesterday.

PFB fully supports these bills as they currently are written. If these key PFB priority issues are addressed in these bills, PFB will support Sunday hunting within this package. This is according to our policy: “We recommend supporting Sunday hunting if multiple PFB policy priorities are included in legislation.”

There is similar legislation in the Senate sponsored by Senator Greg Rothman known as the Hunting for Crop Damage Solutions Legislative Package, which includes Senate Bill 1087 and Senate Bill 67, which would repeal the prohibition on Sunday hunting. If the crop damage package passes prior to or with Senate Bill 67, PFB will support the passage of Senate Bill 67.

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