March 2, 2018 Weekly Round Up

Phew!  It has been a heck of a week!  On Monday, I was in Cat Spring for our Ranchers Leasing Workshop.  We had a great turnout of 95 folks!  On Tuesday, I was in Waco speaking to the Master Marketer course.  Wednesday brought me back to the Panhandle to speak at the 4th Annual Biennial Water Conservation Symposium.  Welcome to all of you joining from these events.

*”FARM” Act introduced in US Senate would exempt agriculture from air emissions reporting.  The Fair Agricultural Reporting Method (FARM) Act, a bipartisan bill that would legislatively exempt agricultural operations from reporting air emissions under CERCLA. [Read bill here.]   As you may recall from this prior blog posts, the EPA passed an exemption for agriculture in 2008, but last year, a federal court struck that down based on a finding that the EPA did not have the authority to make that exemption.  The FARM Act would legislatively create the same exemption under the federal law.  Currently, there is a stay in place on the reporting requirement for agriculture reporting through May 1.  [Read article here.]

* US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit lifts stay on 2015 WOTUS Rule.  As expected, the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit lifted the nationwide stay on the 2015 WOTUS Rule this week.  This was due to a US Supreme Court decision earlier this year finding that appellate courts did not have jurisdiction to hear this challenge.  Currently, the 2015 rule is not in effect as the EPA recently enacted a rule that will postpone the 2015 Rule’s effectiveness to 2020.  Lawsuits challenging the EPA on that are currently pending.

* Planning makes farm transitions easier.  Missouri Farmer Today published a great article highlighting one Missouri farm family’s approach to farm transition planning and how they are slowly passing control from the parents to the son and his wife.  The article makes some great points, including the fact that hard conversations do not get easier over time!  [Read article here.]

*California Court issues injunction against local label for glyphosate.  California passed Proposition 65, which would require a carcinogen warning label be included on glyphosate. This week, a US District Court Judge issued a preliminary injunction sought by agricultural groups and attorneys general from several other states to prevent this labeling rule from going into place in the state.  For now, the label will not be in use, at least until a final ruling is made on this issue by the court.  [Read article here.]

*South Dakota farmers file suit against John Deere after tractor fires.  After two John Deere 9460R tractors caught fire on the same day, farmers in South Dakota filed suit against John Deere claiming that the tractors were defective.  [Read article here.]

Presentations Next Week

On Monday, I’ll be doing a presentation the luncheon meeting of the Dallas Ag Club via internet on some hot button ag law issues.  On Tuesday, I’ll be moderating a panel on immigration at the High Plains Dairy Conference here in Amarillo.  For more information, click here.

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