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Legislative Updates

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State Level:

Montana Farm Bureau members have two full-time lobbyists representing the interests of Montana farms and ranches at the state capitol. Several hundred bills are introduced each session and all are reviewed for potential impact to our member farmers and ranchers. In addition to the legislative session, Montana Farm Bureau lobbyists keep in close working contact with the administration and all agencies.

National Level:

Montana Farm Bureau members have their own national lobbying team in Montana as well as the entire lobbying staff housed by American Farm Bureau. Montana representatives make weekly contact with our Montana Congressional Delegation in D.C. and keep them updated to our agriculture positions.

Montana Farm Bureau volunteer leaders maintain an active presence at the state Capitol and in D.C. At several times during the legislative session, volunteer leaders testify before committees. On both levels, when there are critical issues before lawmakers, Montana Farm Bureau issues a “Call to Action” that activates our extensive grassroots network – members by calling, writing and sending e-mails to their legislators on specific bills.

How to Contact Your Legislator

Latest Legislative Updates

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March 13th, 2009: Montana Farm Bureau supports SB 465

Montana Farm Bureau testified in support of SB 465 on Wednesday, a bill which addresses concerns regarding the recent “PPL v. State of Montana” court case. In that case, the district court ruled that beds of all navigable streams belong to the Montana School Trust, requiring landowners to acquire leases, licenses or easements in order […] Continue reading . . .

March 12th, 2009: Montana Farm Bureau Federation urges members to ask governor to sign HB 418

HELENA–The Montana Farm Bureau Federation (MFBF) is asking its members, as well as like-minded horse owners across the state, to urge Governor Brian Schweitzer to sign off on HB 418, the horse processing facility bill. “If Montana could establish a horse processing facility, it would be a great benefit to Montana and to the equine […] Continue reading . . .

March 9th, 2009: Farm Bureau Calls “Cow Tax” Bill Timely and Critical

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 5, 2009—Legislation introduced today to prevent a “cow tax” on farmers and ranchers is both “timely and critical,” said the American Farm Bureau Federation. In a letter to the bill’s sponsors, Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), AFBF commended their bipartisan efforts and said the organization would work with them […] Continue reading . . .

March 2nd, 2009: MGGA, MFBF express concern at aspects of Obama’s USDA Budget

The Montana Farm Bureau Federation and the Montana Grain Growers’ Association have expressed strong concern at several aspects of the Obama Administration’s 2010 Budget Proposal for the United States Department of Agriculture. The proposal would have an extremely detrimental affect on family farms and rural communities both in Montana and across the United States. Obama’s […] Continue reading . . .

February 27th, 2009: Montana Farm Bureau pleased with first half of Legislative Session

HELENA–The Montana Farm Bureau Federation considers the first half of the 61st Montana Legislative Session a success, and is optimistic about the second half. “We’ve had a record number of members testifying on bills, as well as had legislators friendly to agriculture in the House and Senate, so it’s been a good first half,” notes […] Continue reading . . .

February 20th, 2009: MFBF applauds House Agriculture Committee on two bills

HELENA–The Montana Farm Bureau applauds the House Agriculture Committee on its “yea” votes for H.B. 482 which would provide state assistance for economic damage caused by brucellosis; and H.B. 418, which would authorize investor-owned livestock slaughter and processing plants. Farm Bureau members testified earlier on both bills. H.B. 482, would have the state reimburse ranchers […] Continue reading . . .

February 20th, 2009: MFBF says Big Sky Rivers Act violates property rights

HELENA– The Montana Farm Bureau Federation is opposing HB 455, known as the “Big Sky Rivers Act” that would make setbacks on selected Montana rivers at 250 feet, limit electricity in building near the water, and make water front properties have a 150-foot vegetated buffer zone. The bill was heard in the Local Government Committee, […] Continue reading . . .

February 17th, 2009: County Farm Bureaus “Call on Capitol” to learn about legislative process

Seventeen members of county Farm Bureaus across Montana had the opportunity to hold a “Calling on the Capitol” February 11-12 in Helena. The group met with the chair people of the House and Senate Agriculture Committees, along with visiting State Veterinarian Marty Zaluski, Department of Livestock’s Executive Officer Christian MacKay and Department of Natural Resources […] Continue reading . . .

February 12th, 2009: MFBF Equine Committee Chair testifies on equine processing plant bill

HELENA–Montana Farm Bureau Equine Committee Chair Mack Cole testified today to the House Agriculture Committee on House Bill 418, a bill supportive of building a horse processing facility in Montana. The bill says that the court of Montana may not issue an injunction stopping or delaying the construction of an equine processing facility. “If Montana […] Continue reading . . .

January 29th, 2009: MFBF Bison Study

Montana Farm Bureau contracted with an independent third party to do a study of the Yellowstone Park bison, brucellosis, the Intermountain Bison Management Plan (IBMP) and the potential impacts to state and national livestock industry. The study found that Yellowstone National Park needs to actively manage the bison within park boundaries and work toward eradication […] Continue reading . . .
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