The National Farmers Union has announced its support for S.3221, introduced by Senator Herb Kohl, D-Wisc. S.3221 would protect eligibility for farm borrowers participating in USDA Farm Service Agency guaranteed farm loan programs. The current loan guarantee programs contain a limitation on the number of years a borrower is eligible to receive a loan guarantee. The current farm bill waives implementation of the term limitation. The Kohl bill would extend the waiver for another two years in order to allow farmers to access loan guarantees that help cover operating expenses.
NFU President Roger Johnson says eligibility is key to many farmers. If family farmers and ranchers are made ineligible for the FSA guaranteed farm loan programs, they may be unable to continue farming. Johnson says continued access to FSA credit programs is a critical issue for America's farm and ranch families.
NFU urges Congress to give the Secretary of Agriculture the authority to implement commodity loan programs with loan rates set at a level that at least equals the cost of production as measured by the Economic Research Service. In order to provide a safety net, NFU believes in establishing a revolving loan pool for all FSA loans to ensure loan repayment is credited to the FSA budget.