Shortened session yielded some “wins” for MO Farm Bureau
The Missouri legislative session was shortened by the pandemic but the president of the Missouri Farm Bureau says it yielded some wins for agriculture.
Blake Hurst says although funding had to be removed from the rural broadband office, the ability of the office to continue its work was extended. Hurst tells Brownfield Ag News, “The budget situation deteriorated and that funding was removed. But the structure is still there on the ability to use federal funds. All of those things are still there. And that was really, we think, an important step forward for broadband.”
Hurst says the ballot measure meant to improve the so-called clean Missouri initiative still tightens down on lobbyists but uses a bipartisan committee as in the past – and will go before voters in December.
A big disappointment, Hurst says, was the inability to pass legislation preventing private companies from using eminent domain, as in the case of the wind power Grain Belt Express across northern Missouri which will be allowed to proceed, “And it was enabled by a group of senators who are proud to call themselves the conservative caucus. Conservatism, to me, means respect for private property but, obviously, not in this case.”
And Hurst says they’re disappointed the measure to expand the use of biofuels did not pass but he believes it would have had there been a normal session.
^ Interview with Blake Hurst ^