I am Cyndi Johnson, born and raised in Southeastern Montana on a ranch south of Broadus on the Powder River.  I currently farm with my husband and best friend, Ken, on a farm he bought and farmland we bought from his parents and farmland I bought near the “turn of the century” (the most recent turn). We have three children and the number of “grands” continues to rise.  We raise winter wheat, spring wheat, peas, and chickpeas.  I am a recovering politician, serving 12 years as a County Commissioner, and recently worked in economic development for a county wide organization.  
I currently serve as the Secretary/Treasurer for our County organization and have been in that capacity since before my last child was born!  We have a small group of active members and need to work on being more organized and visible in our communities.
I also serve as the Vice-President of Montana Farm Bureau and I love every minute of it. There is always something to be learned and challenges to be met and I appreciate every opportunity to do both. 
This year, I’ve been charged with chairing the MFBF Taxation Committee.  The taxation committee has membership from every corner of Montana and we represent both livestock and small grain/forage/pulse producers with a bit of retired gentlemen/women farmers for added flavor.  Many unique perspectives regarding the issue of taxation create very healthy discussions and some great learning opportunities for committee members.   
The result of our committee work should always be sharing information from committee meetings with our local county organizations. These local organizations may or may not decide to address a taxation issue but they should always be able to understand the issues – if we committee members are doing our job. Montana ranchers and farmers should be able to glean valuable information both from their respective county organization and MFBF in regard to taxation issues. 
During our meeting at the MFBF Summer Conference; the committee had a full agenda. We discussed current tax issues including:
  •  Capturing lost revenue due to e-commerce
  • Ensuring we have a place at the table in regard to taxing production agriculture
  • Taxation of small Ag land parcels 
Editor’s Note: These tax issues need your thought and consideration.  All of these topics are currently being discussed and debated by Legislative Interim Committees and there may be legislation proposed as a result of those discussions.  MFBF needs to have clear, concise policy on these issues so our lobbyists can do their jobs in defending our agricultural interests.  Please consider discussing these topics during your County Policy Development meetings.  If you have questions about taxation issues, contact Nicole Rolf at nicoler@mfbf.org.