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'Holy crap': Experts find tax plan riddled with glitches

Republicans’ tax-rewrite plans are riddled with bugs, loopholes and other potential problems that could plague lawmakers long after their legislation is signed into law.Some of the provisions could be easily gamed, tax lawyers say. Their plans to cut taxes on “pass-through” businesses in particular could open broad avenues for tax avoidance.Others would have unintended results, like a last-minute decision by the Senate to keep the alternative minimum tax, which was designed to make sure wealthy people and corporations don't escape taxes altogether.

What Does Trade Mean to Your Bottom Line

Henderson pointed out that, when ag exports increase, the farm economy does better, thus good trade deals are important to the economic prosperity of U.S. farmers. Yet, a good NAFTA deal is more than just continued tariff-free access to Canada and Mexico for U.S. corn and soybeans, “We are going to have some segments of U.S. agriculture like the poultry and dairy sectors, that are going to have a different perspective on trade with Canada and Mexico that corn and soybean growers.”  U.S. dairy and poultry producers say the current NAFTA deal is unfair to their industry.

USDA’s new Innovation Center, and its new chief, face big challenges

Anne Hazlett, who oversees Rural Development at USDA, wants to get the word out that RD’s new Innovation Center will soon be open for business, with a new executive at the helm and a long list of challenges to face, including the opioid epidemic that’s been devastating rural communities.

FDA Working to Address Concerns About Regulation of Human Food By-products Used for Animal Food

The FDA is committed to working with industry to address concerns about the regulation of human food by-products used for animal food, and is considering approaches that balance practical and public health considerations. Several sectors of the food industry have expressed concern about having to meet preventive controls requirements under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) for certain activities commonly performed to facilitate the storage and transportation of these by-products.

USDA Cutbacks Include Decommissioning Brucellosis Studies

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's plans to decommission brucellosis field studies is in direct conflict of a recent study that concluded that brucellosis is spreading in wildlife, and more research is needed, not less, in both elk and bison.

EPA, Army propose two-year delay of WOTUS

The U.S. EPA and the U.S. Department of the Army are proposing to delay the effective date of the Waters of the U.S. rule by two years. The 2015 rule, which redefined the scope of where the Clean Water Act applies, had an effective date of Aug. 28, 2015. Implementation of the 2015 rule is on hold as a result of the Sixth Circuit’s nationwide stay of the rule, but that stay may be affected by a pending Supreme Court case. The 2015 rule is also stayed in 13 states due to a North Dakota district court ruling.

EPA leaves biodiesel alone, raises cellulosic volume

Despite a major push from the Midwest to bolster Renewable Fuel Standard volumes for biomass-based diesel and cellulosic ethanol, in the end, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency left its final numbers released on Thursday virtually untouched from the original proposal. Though the biodiesel industry pressed President Donald Trump's administration for higher biomass-based diesel volumes above the proposed 2.1 billion gallons for 2019, the EPA left that number unchanged.

Letter: Stop using farmers like me to sell flawed tax reform bill

Whether Republican or Democrat, most of us agree that tax reform and simplification is necessary. However, as is often the case, those supporting a piece of legislation overstate their talking points. As a farmer, I felt that I had to respond to those politicians who use farmers like me as the reason why the estate tax should be eliminated.

WOTUS Block included in appropriations bill

A bill approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee on June 16 would block the implementation of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule as it funds the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at $32 billion. The 2017 Interior and Environment bill would cut $125 million from current fiscal 2016 levels and is $1.1 billion less than the White House sought. The House Appropriations committee also marked up its Interior and Environment bill that includes a rider against WOTUS.


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