State

USDA service centers closed to public

Beginning today, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) service centers will be instituting locked door policies, with no public access to USDA offices. One employee per agency will be permitted in the office (one conservation district employee, one NRCS employee, one FSA employee, etc.) on a rotating schedule. High-risk employees will not be subject to rotation during this full telework plan. ... Read More »

2020 Legislative Session WAWG wrap-up

Download the report here. The 2020 Legislative session has come to a close, concluding its intense 60-day session on time. The session began focusing on homelessness, housing and transportation in light of voter-approved $30 car tabs. However, the final days of the session were dominated by fears about the potential economic fallout from COVID-19. These fears led lawmakers to cut ... Read More »

Industry drafts letter to governor in support of ag, food supply chains

The following letter was delivered to Governor Inslee March 18, 2020, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as a call to keep Washington agriculture moving forward in uncertain times. We understand COVID-19 is creating a stressful time and policy decisions are extremely difficult and fluid. You can be assured Washington’s farmers, dairies, livestock auction markets, ranchers and food processors ... Read More »

Legislative report 03/17: Legislature passes budgets, adjourns

By Diana Carlen WAWG Lobbyist The 2020 legislative session wrapped up on March 12, concluding its intense 60-day session on-time for the third year in a row.  Legislators began the 2020 session primarily focused on homelessness, housing and figuring out transportation funding in light of voter-approved $30 car tabs.  Democratic lawmakers also hoped to use their large majorities in the ... Read More »

NASS to gather information on crop share rent data

By Christopher Mertz Director, Northwest Region, National Agricultural Statistics Service The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) is working with the Farm Service Agency (FSA) to conduct a pilot nonirrigated cropland survey. The purpose of this pilot study is to provide supplemental data to FSA to help set Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) rates as they pertain to ... Read More »

Temporary fix offered for Douglas County CRP issue

There’s some good news for Douglas County producers who are wondering what to do with their expiring Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acreage. At February’s state board meeting of the Washington Association of Wheat Growers (WAWG), Jon Wyss, Farm Service Agency’s (FSA) Washington state executive director, announced a temporary fix for growers in Douglas County who are ineligible for the current ... Read More »

State legislative report 03/10: End of session is in sight

By Diana Carlen WAWG Lobbyist Tuesday marked the 57th day of the 2020 Legislative Session which is scheduled to end on March 12. Another important legislative deadline occurred last week, in which all bills must have passed out of both chambers to remain alive, unless they are deemed Necessary To Implement the Budget. Over the next four days the legislature ... Read More »

Low carbon fuel standard could be costly to farmers

By Diana Carlen WAWG Lobbyist During the 2020 Legislative Session, state lawmakers are once again considering adopting a low carbon fuel standard (LCFS) for transportation fuels. A top priority of Gov. Inslee’s, LCFS legislation passed the House last year, but stalled in the Senate.   Aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, a LCFS would require fuel suppliers to reduce the carbon ... Read More »

Northwest wheat states respond to draft EIS

On behalf of the Northwest wheat-producing states, we strongly support the findings in the Columbia River System Operations Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), specifically the Preferred Alternative for the operations, maintenance and configuration of the Columbia River System. Together, our four states produce over 500 million bushels of wheat annually. Much of that wheat is bound for export markets.Pacific Northwest ... Read More »