Edition #2: June
 
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Colby Ferguson

Val Connelly



 
 What's Inside
Government Relations
Take Action!
Upcoming Events
Member Benefits































































  Government Relations  
  MD Farmers Talk Trade, Labor, Broadband with Members of Congress  
  By Emily Solis, Communications Specialist

Farm Bureau members met with several Members of Congress this past week to discuss issues including the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) for trade, the need for agricultural labor reform, and increasing access to high-speed internet in rural areas. Read more here.
 

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  MFB Submits Comments on WIP Phase III Draft  
  Maryland Farm Bureau submitted comments on behalf of its members regarding the Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP) Phase III draft that was released by the Maryland Department of the Environment. Read our comments here.  

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  MFB Urges President Trump to Resolve Trade Disputes  
  Maryland Farm Bureau, on behalf of its 26,000 members, submitted a letter to President Trump, urging a speedy resolution to current trade discussions. Letters from Farm Bureaus across the country were given to the President, just prior to the announcement of a $16 billion agricultural relief package. Read the letter here  

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  Thank You, Farm Bureau  
  By Valerie Connelly, Executive Director

As my days at Maryland Farm Bureau wind down, I want to take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation for the Farm Bureau members and staff - a family really - that I have worked with over the last 24 years. Your strength and perseverance both in your farm businesses and in your service to the community are unmatched. Read more here.
 

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  Torres to Lead Maryland Farm Bureau  
  The Maryland Farm Bureau Board of Directors has named John Torres, CAE the organization's new Executive Director - effective mid-July 2019. Torres has held several key positions within the Farm Bureau family since 2006. As Executive Director, Torres will serve as the chief executive of the statewide organization and lead efforts to advance its mission to protect and grow Maryland agriculture and preserve rural life. Click here to read the full release.  

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  EPA Administrator Signed Rule to Add Reporting Exemption for Air Emissions from Animal Waste  
  U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler signed a final rule amending the emergency release notification regulations under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). The amendments clarify that reporting of air emissions from animal waste at farms is not required under EPCRA. For more information, click here.  

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  Cover Crop Sign-Up Starts June 21st  
  The annual sign-up period for the Maryland Department of Agriculture's cover crop program will take place June 21 - July 17 at soil conservation district offices statewide. This year's program includes two new incentives for farmers. Read more here.    

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  Dairy Margin Coverage Decision Tool Available  
  The 2019 Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program sign-up period opens on Monday, June 17th. The USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) has developed a tool for producers to determine which level of coverage they want from the DMC program. Use the tool here.  

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  Pesticide Container Recycling Collection Days Scheduled  
  The Maryland Department of Agriculture's pesticide container recycling program opened June 1st for farmers, pesticide applicators, and others who wish to dispose of pesticide containers properly. A total of 28 collection days are scheduled from June through September at seven locations throughout the state. Find dates and locations here.  

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  MARBIDCO's Next Gen Program Now Open  
  The Maryland Agricultural and Resource-Based Industry Development Corporation (MARBIDCO) has announced that the Next Generation Farmland Acquisition Program ("Next Gen Program") is now open to help qualified young or beginning farmers who seek to purchase farmland but need some specialized financial assistance to enter (or continue in) the agricultural profession in exchange for helping to preserve the farmland. Learn more here.  

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  Northeast SARE Pre-Proposals Due June 25th  
  Northeast SARE is now accepting pre-proposals for the Research and Education, Professional Development and Research for Novel Approaches grant programs. Proposals are due by 5pm on June 25th. Apply here.  

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  Take Action!  
  Maryland Agriculture Secretary Urges Farmers to Participate in USDA June Surveys  
  Maryland Agriculture Secretary Joe Bartenfelder is urging farmers across the state to participate in the upcoming agricultural surveys by the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). NASS will be conducting two major mid-year surveys - the  June Agricultural Survey and the June Area Survey. The agency will contact nearly 1,000 producers across Maryland to determine crop acreage and stock levels as of June 1, 2019. Read more here.  

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  Upcoming Events  
  Breakfast on the Farm  
  The University of Maryland Extension is hosting their second Breakfast on the Farm at Valley-Ho Farm in Middletown, MD on June 22nd. This is a free, family-friendly event where people of all ages are welcome to visit a real farm, meet the farm family, ask questions of knowledgeable volunteers, and get a firsthand look at modern food production on the self-guided walking tour. Get tickets here.  

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  Nationwide Social Security Webinar  
  As a farmer, do you know what it takes to be eligible for Social Security retirement benefits? Join us for a live webinar on Tuesday, June 25th to learn how to get the most out of your Social Security benefits. Register here.  

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  Member Benefits  
  Dungarees  
  GIVEAWAY: Head over to the Maryland Farm Bureau Facebook page for a chance to win a Buffalo Cap and Pen Screwdriver from Dungarees! Be sure to enter by Friday, June 14th! Find giveaway details here.  

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