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Published March 21, 2012, 03:59 PM

Klobuchar’s staff continues farm bill meetings

MINNEAPOLIS – U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s staff continues a series of regional meetings seeking the public’s ideas and suggestions for the upcoming 2012 farm bill, which is being crafted this year.

By: Agweek staff and wire reports, Agweek

MINNEAPOLIS – U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s staff continues a series of regional meetings seeking the public’s ideas and suggestions for the upcoming 2012 farm bill, which is being crafted this year.

Klobuchar serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee, which has responsibility for writing the legislation.

Klobuchar’s staff is holding nine regional meetings this week. Yesterday, there were meetings in Chatfield, Austin and Mankato. Today, there are meetings in Worthington, Marshall and Morris. On Thursday, there will be meetings in East Grand Forks, Moorhead and Alexandria.

Additional meetings in central and northern Minnesota will take place in the next few weeks.

“In 2008, we passed a strong farm bill that has helped our farmers remain the most productive in the world while also protecting them in hard times,” Klobuchar said. “My goal with the 2012 farm bill is to further strengthen Minnesota’s rural economy and ensure that our farmers continue to have the support they need to thrive and succeed. I want to hear from Minnesotans on how best to achieve this goal.”

The three members of Klobuchar’s staff who will convene the series of meetings are: Chuck Ackman and Andy Martin, her outreach directors for agriculture and rural issues, and Adam Durand, her legislative assistant specializing in agriculture and rural issues.

At each meeting, they will provide an overview on process and the expected timeline for the 2012 farm bill. They will also lead a discussion with audience members about what they would like to see in the legislation.

Klobuchar is a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee which has been holding a series of hearings focused on the 2012 Farm Bill. Klobuchar has had several Minnesota farmers attend to testify on agriculture issues. In 2008, she worked closely with House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson, D-Minn., to pass a farm bill that made farm programs more efficient and accountable, expanded the market for biofuels, and strengthened the safety net for farmers and rural communities that support thousands of jobs in every corner of Minnesota.

The itinerary for the regional meetings on Thursday is:

• 8:30 a.m. at the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association in East Grand Forks

• 11:30 a.m. in Room A-117 in the Oscar Bergos Center on the Minnesota State Community and Technical College campus in Moorhead

• 3:30 p.m. in Room 209 of the Main Building on the Alexandria Technical & Community College campus in Alexandria

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