Trump to Address American Farm Bureau; USDA Still Short-Staffed
**President Trump will address the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 99th Annual Convention next month in Nashville.
Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall says he’s honored to host the President who said he would make sure agriculture is heard when it comes to the top issues facing America’s farmers and ranchers.
Duvall considers President Trump’s announced speech a sign of his high regard for those families.
**The tax reform bill approved Tuesday night by Congress will repeal Section 199, the Domestic Production Activities Deduction, which allowed farmers to deduct proceeds from ag products marketed through Ag cooperatives.
The Section 199 provision equates to nearly $2 billion nationally.
National Milk Producers Federation CEO, Jim Mulhern tells Dairyherd.com, some estimates put the loss of this deduction for dairy farmers at $100 per cow, but revisions would allow cooperative members to claim a new 20% deduction on payments from co-ops.
The bill now moves to the President’s desk for his signature.
**Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue is still lacking staff at the USDA nearly a year after taking office.
Perdue tells AgWired.com he ‘had no idea we would be delayed like this and it’s unfortunate, but we have seven or eight different mission areas that need leadership, with less than half of those filled.’
One of the delays is Bill Northey as USDA Under Secretary of Farm Production and Conservation, who was nominated over three months ago but put on hold by Senator Ted Cruz over ethanol politics.