Current Issues

Governor’s proposed budget includes fossil fuel carbon tax

By Diana Carlen WAWG Lobbyist On Dec. 14, Gov. Jay Inslee released his proposed supplemental operating budget for the 2017-2019 biennium. The supplemental operating budget makes tweaks to the current $43.7 billion, two-year state budget that was adopted earlier this year. The Governor proposes tapping into the state’s reserves by almost a billion dollars to respond to a recent Supreme ... Read More »

Judge declares clean air rule invalid

From the Association of Washington Business A Thurston County judge blocked the Washington State Department of Ecology’s (Ecology) Clean Air Rule from moving forward, saying the state lacks the authority to implement it without legislative approval. Ecology implemented the rule in 2016 at the direction of Gov. Jay Inslee. A coalition of employer groups led by the Association of Washington ... Read More »

Budget likely to have big impacts on 2018 Farm Bill

By Trista Crossley Wheat Life Editor As the clock begins ticking louder on the 2018 Farm Bill, Josh Tonsager, the National Association of Wheat Growers’ (NAWG) vice president of policy and communications, gave a farm bill update at last month’s Tri-State Grain Growers Convention. “From a national level, we’ve (NAWG) been interacting regularly with House and Senate ag committee staffs ... Read More »

Education funding back on legislative agenda for 2018 session

By Diana Carlen WAWG Lobbyist On Jan. 8, 2018, the Washington State Legislature will be back in session in Olympia for a “short” session that is scheduled to last only 60 days. The 60-day short sessions are typically used for tweaking the biennial budgets approved in odd-number years, not for major overhauls. However, a recent order from the Washington State ... Read More »

Annual convention closes books on another successful year

While the thunder may have been rolling and friends were being found in low places at the nearby Spokane, Wash., arena*, at the Davenport Grand Hotel, the 2017 Tri-State Grain Growers Convention was bringing together more than 450 Pacific Northwest grain producers, industry stakeholders and exhibitors to network and hear the latest in politics, weather and technology. “We had an ... Read More »

Deishl, Appel named 2018 Washington wheat ambassadors

Two new high school seniors have been selected to represent Washington wheat farmers as ambassadors for the upcoming year: Lexi Deishl of Waterville and Kyle Appel of Colfax. Deishl and Appel were selected after a written application process that included submitting a short introductory video. The ambassadors will represent Washington wheat farmers at various civic and community events and will ... Read More »

NWF announces national winners for the 2017 National Wheat Yield Contest

Two Washington state growers have placed in the National Wheat Foundation’s (NWF) National Wheat Yield Contest (NWYC). Phillip Gross of Warden, Wash., was named the high yield winner, and Brian Cochrane of Kahlotus, Wash., placed in the dryland winter wheat category. The contest offers growers the opportunity to compete with farmers from across the U.S. and improve wheat productivity on their ... Read More »

Washington wheat industry calls for ‘no harm’ in trade agreement renegotiations

The Washington wheat industry urges its Congressional delegation to communicate to the highest levels of government that renegotiation of existing trade agreements, “do no harm” to agricultural exports. The Washington Grain Commission (WGC) and the Washington Association of Wheat Growers (WAWG) called trade the “lifeblood” of Eastern Washington farmers and warned of fallout if the international commerce is jeopardized. Mike ... Read More »

U.S. wheat flows freely to Mexico under NAFTA

By Steve Mercer Vice President of Communications, U.S. Wheat Associates Before the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) entered into force on Jan. 1, 1994, state intervention and import tariffs held U.S. wheat exports from the Mexican market. NAFTA ended both, and the newly opened market helped the Mexican flour milling and wheat foods industries to flourish, as did U.S. ... Read More »

Two new Washington Wheat Ambassadors selected

Two high school seniors have been selected to represent Washington wheat farmers and will serve as the Washington Wheat Ambassadors for the upcoming year. Lexi Deishl of Waterville and Kyle Appel of Colfax were selected after an initial written application process that also included submitting a short introductory video. Deishl and Appel will each be giving a speech at the ... Read More »