Members of the NGFA’s Executive, Country Elevator and International Trade/Agriculture Policy Committees and NGFA State/Regional Affiliated Associations gathered in Washington, D.C., this week to meet with the offices of more than 100 lawmakers about the urgency of passing the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) and other NGFA policy priorities.
NGFA members heard a range of positions expressed by lawmakers and staff on USMCA, including strong support of the agreement, tempered support from those members of Congress who said they want to approve the pact but would need certain issues addressed (like enforcement of labor standards and lengthier patents for pharmaceutical drugs), and one congressional office that very candidly opposed the deal and argued Pelosi shouldn’t give the administration such a significant policy win.
During this week’s congressional visits – in addition to advocating for timely USMCA approval – NGFA members also:
- conveyed their experiences with unfair and non-reciprocal demurrage and accessorial charges imposed by the Class I railroads;
- emphasized the importance of reauthorizing the U.S. Grain Standards Act in 2019;
- voiced support for increased inland waterways infrastructure and harbor maintenance appropriations; and
- made the case for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to reconsider how it applies the “solely engaged” exemption to grain elevators co-located on the same premises as a feed mill.
For more information on the priorities being advocated by NGFA on behalf of the grain, feed, processing and export industry, please refer to this issue briefing document.
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