August 25, 2023 Weekly Round Up

Happy Friday!  Once again, we’ve had a number of ag law issues in the news the past couple of weeks.

Photo by Sha Ro on Unsplash

Bipartisan group of lawmakers ask House Agriculture Committee Chairman not to include EATS Act in the next Farm Bill.  A letter signed by more than 170 lawmakers asks House Ag Committee Chair Glenn “GT” Thompson not to include the EATS Act in a new farm bill.  The Ending Agricultural Trade Suppression Act was proposed after the Supreme Court upheld California’s Proposition 12 and would prohibit such measures in other states.  The Act is currently being considered in the House and Senate and has support from a number of agricultural groups and trade organizations.  [Read article here.]

* Texas Right to Farm amendment interview.  I recently did an interview with Texas Standard looking at the amendments to the Texas Right to Farm statute.  To read the interview, click here.   To read a blog post outlining all of the changes in detail, click here.

* Iowa judge rules on meaning of “tractor” in case pitting father against son.  An Iowa trial court judge recently issued an order determining the meaning of the word “tractor.”  This lawsuit involved an agreement where a father agreed to sell his son the “tractor” for $10,000.  The two men disagreed on whether the “tractor” included the PTO shaft, three-point hitch arm, and a draw bar.  The court ruled in favor of the son and ordered that he be allowed to keep the additional items.  [Read Order here.]

Montana trial court rules in favor of youth challenging fossil fuel industry.  A Montana trial court recently found in favor of sixteen youths who claim that certain laws and regulations (or lack thereof) related to fossil fuels in Montana violate their constitutional right to a “clean and healthful” environment.  [Read opinion here.]  This decision will almost certainly be appealed.

* The most important farm asset.  I appreciated a recent article in Dakota Farmer reminding us all that to find the most important farm asset, we need to look in the mirror.  The article offers a number of suggestions to manage stress, take stock of your own mental health, and offers resources for anyone struggling.  [Read article here.]  With Suicide Prevention Awareness Month just around the corner, this is a topic we will continue to tackle on the Ag Law in the Field podcast.  To hear our prior episodes related to rural mental health, click here.

* Watch out for DIY estate plans.  I recently came across an article warning of the dangers of a do-it-yourself estate plan.  I could not agree more with the points the author makes.  [Read article here.]

Upcoming Programs

I’ve updated my calendar and have lots of presentations on deck between now and the end of the year.  Next week, I’ll be headed to Brownwood for a County Extension meeting hosted by Scott Anderson where I’ll be covering key ag laws for landowners.  On Thursday, I’ve got a double header.  I’ll be in Lubbock to speak on estate planning at the Capital Farm Credit AgriRoots Conference along with my friend Stephanie Fryer.  After that, I’ll zoom into the Rio Grande Valley Ranch Management Program in Willacy County to cover a variety of topics.  To see my complete list of upcoming programs, click here.

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