Des Moines, IA – Family farm advocates from across the state will convene at the Capitol on Tuesday, January 24th. The Family Farm Lobby Day is hosted by the Iowa Farmers Union, an organization committed to creating policy change that strengthens independent family farms.
The Family Farm Lobby Day will be held on the afternoon of Tuesday, January 24th at the Capitol. Supporters are invited to ask for legislative support for local production of renewable energy and food. Family farm advocates will lobby for strengthening fertilizer application laws, limiting confined animal feeding operation (CAFO) tax breaks, and restricting Eminent Domain use on agricultural land. The event starts at noon in the first floor rotunda with an opening from IFU President Chris Petersen. Participants will spend the afternoon attending agriculture committee hearings and meeting with elected officials. The Family Farm Lobby Day is free and open to the public.
Iowans need to gather in support of family farms at the Capitol to show solidarity. “The way of life for all family farms, from fresh vegetables to grain and livestock, is being challenged,” said IFU President Chris Petersen of Clear Lake, “it is important that we stand together to speak out.”
At the beginning of the 2012 legislative session, the Iowa Farmers Union will be launching its campaign of legislative priorities to protect and advocate for family farmers.
- Promote sustainable local food systems by implementing recommendations from the Local Food, Farms, and Jobs report created by the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture;
- Encourage development of locally-owned and controlled renewable energy;
- Oppose any changes to the current prohibition of spreading manure on frozen or snow-covered land;
- Eliminate property tax exemption on CAFO manure storage facilities, tax animal confinement buildings at the industrial rate if property owner does not own the livestock, and support reforming Tax Increment Financing (TIF); and
- Fight the use of Eminent Domain to remove farmland from production for any reason.
The Iowa Farmers Union is a grassroots organization, founded in 1915, that empowers family farms through education, cooperation, and legislation. To learn more about the Family Farm Lobby Day, go to: www.iowafarmersunion.org/events