This month a few new faces have started to work in nation’s capital.  Director of the Food and Ag Policy Research Institute with the University of Missouri, Pat Westhoff says there are plenty of challenges ahead for both the weathered and fresh eyes elected to serve…

“We’ve got several important milestones in front of us.  The first one is going to be the debate over the debt limit that’s coming up in the near future,” Westhoff says.  “I think there will be strong demands for spending cuts at that time and I’m sure at least some people will propose cuts in farm programs as part of any deal to extend the debt limit.”

The desire to cut spending means there will be vulnerability in agriculture programs.

“Many of us were probably a little surprised that in the deal that was just cut as far as the fiscal cliff deal that there were no changes in direct payments as part of that package.  So I’m sure at least some folks will talk about that.  I know many have been concerned about possible cuts in crop insurance as well.”  He adds “I wouldn’t rule anything out but I would suggest that at least the evidence so far has been that there’s been very strong support for crop insurance.”

The FAPRI Director will offer additional legislative insight during the KMZU farmer appreciation dinner on January 30th.  The event will be held at La Bella Winery in Lafayette County.  Doors open at 5:30.

Reservations should be submitted by January 25th.  To reserve a seat call 660-542-0404 during business hours Monday through Friday.  To reserve a seat by email, click here to submit your reservation to KMZU Farm Director Janet Adkison.

Click the following link to hear the Jan. 18th Newsmaker with Pat Westhoff.

Newsmaker Pat Westoff Jan 18 www