Feedback: Farm Bill Fallout

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The Republican-controlled House narrowly passed a new farm bill Thursday.

"While they passed a bill, there's really no chance of any legislation moving forward," said Ron Robbins of North Harbor Dairy Farm.

That's because the bill passed the House but may not make it out of the Senate.

The bill still helps farmers, but, for the first time in decades, doesn't include funding for food stamps.

If you're wondering why food stamps would be a part of the farm bill, the answer takes you right back to politics in Washington.

"From a political standpoint, and that's what we're talking about, the collaboration between rural and urban lawmakers, it brings the two sides together," said Steve Ammerman of the New York Farm Bureau.

That means rural and urban lawmakers tie farms with food stamps to gain enough votes.

"Agricultural districts need the urban districts just as much as the urban districts need the agricultural districts for votes," said  Julia Robbins of the American Soy Bean Association.

The Democrat-controlled Senate isn't likely to go along with a bill that splits up farming and food stamps.

A bill that doesn't pass by September's deadline, means farmers would lose key programs.

"Speciality crops, conservation, those programs would stand little chance in the future of ever receiving benefits under the farm bill," said north country Congressman Bill Owens (D. - 21st District).

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Thursday, October 30, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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