Sen. Pat Roberts says the level of federal subsidies for crop insurance will dominate this years farm bill discussion. Roberts, who chairs the Senate agriculture committee, talked about the issue on Friday.
At a farm convention in Kansas City, Roberts said a federal budget deal that included protections for dairy and cotton farmers against catastrophic losses could make passing a farm bill simpler.
The debate over the farm bill comes on the heels of some tough years for farmers. Roberts wants to make sure they’re covered when weather or low prices strike. He wants to protect crop insurance subsidies from cuts.
“Now’s not the right time to monkey around with crop insurance," Roberts says. "As far as I’m concerned, we’re not going to do that. We’re just not going to do that.”
Roberts said that he expected this year’s farm bill to pass in the spring.