Edition #4: August
 
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Colby Ferguson

Parker Welch



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































































  Government Relations  
  Make Your Voice Heard Through Policy Development  
 

August is here, and county Farm Bureaus are gearing up for policy development sessions around the state! Maryland Farm Bureau encourages you to get involved and make your voice heard. Reach out to your county Farm Bureau to find out when policy development will take place in your area. Learn more about the policy development process here.

 

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  Changes in MDE Stormwater Management Regulations  
 
Maryland Farm Bureau submitted comments to the Maryland Department of the Environment in February to address changes in stormwater management regulations. The proposed changes would allow soil conservation plans to also serve as a stormwater management plan. The Secretary of the Environment adopted the amendments to Regulation .08 and Regulation .09 under COMAR 26.17.02 Stormwater Management, which took effect July 29th.
 

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  Gov. Hogan Visits Deliteful Dairy  
 
Governor Hogan visited Deliteful Dairy today in Williamsport, MD for a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate their new on-farm milk and cheese processing facility. The farm is owned by Washington County Farm Bureau members Brooks and Katie Long.
 

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  US Dept. of Labor Conducting Farm Inspections  
 

In the past 12 months, inspectors from the U.S. Dept. of Labor, Wage and Hour Division have been conducting inspections on farms and nurseries in Maryland. The Ag Law Education Initiative partnered with the Maryland Department of Labor and Licensing Regulation to create some resources to help better prepare farm employers for these inspections. The first is a self-audit worksheet. The second is a recorded webinar.

 

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  MD Rural Road Safety Study  
 

Farm vehicles and equipment must travel public roads in order to reach outlying fields and to transport products to market or processing facilities. The Maryland Soybean Board researched the issue of farm vehicles crashes and developed strategies to decrease the occurrence. Read more here.

 

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  USDA Announces Details of Support Package for Farmers  
 
U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced further details of the $16 billion package aimed at supporting American agricultural producers while the Administration continues to work on free, fair, and reciprocal trade deals. The Market Facilitation Program (MFP), Food Purchase and Distribution Program (FPDP), and Agricultural Trade Promotion Program (ATP) will assist agricultural producers while President Trump works to address long-standing market access barriers. Read more here.
 

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  Estimating Dairy Trade Aid Payments  
 
Due to the multi-year trade disruptions between the U.S. and China, U.S. dairy exports to the country fell by 13% in 2018, and through May of 2019 dairy exports are down 36% from prior-year levels. To assist farmers producing a variety of commodities, including dairy, the administration recently announced details of a second Market Facilitation Program, i.e., trade-related direct payments to producers, including county-level payment rates for field and cover crops as well as per-unit payment rates for specialty crops, hogs and dairy producers. Read more here.
 

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  Take Action!  
  Ask Congress to Support Rural Broadband Coverage  
 

Rural broadband is a critical pathway to global markets for agriculture and other industries. Farmers and ranchers depend on broadband just as they do highways, railways and waterways. Yet 26.4% of rural Americans lack access to fixed broadband and another 29% of U.S. farms have no internet access. American farms, ranches and rural communities need improved broadband to support our jobs and families. Ask Congress to support the Broadband Data Improvement Act! Take action here.

 

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  Maryland Value Added Grants for Capital Equipment  
 
The Maryland Agricultural and Resource-Based Industry Development Corporation (MARBIDCO) has announced a grant incentive funding opportunity to encourage Maryland's agricultural producers to expand or diversify their business operations by installing capital assets (equipment and fixtures) to make a product that is "value added." Read more here.
 

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  Grants Available from the Maryland Horse Industry Board  
 

The Maryland Horse Industry Board is accepting grant applications for research, educational, and promotional projects that support horses, strengthen the equestrian community, or develop new opportunities for the Maryland horse industry. The deadline to apply is October 15. Read more here.

 

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  Upcoming Events  
  Discussion Meet Training Tuesdays  
 
To help competitors prepare for state and national Discussion Meets, AFBF will be hosting a series of trainings again this fall. Each call/webinar will cover one of the five questions that will be used in the 2020 YF&R Discussion Meet in Austin, TX and the Collegiate Discussion Meet in Louisville, KY. If you have interest in participating in these trainings, please notify Parker Welch at pwelch@mdfarmbureau.com so that you can be added to the listserv and receive call-in credentials. Read more here.
 

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  Maryland Farm Bureau Blue Crabs Fundraiser  
 

Join your Farm Bureau friends and family on Thursday, August 15th for a night of baseball as the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs play the Sugarland Skeeters! In honor of the 15th being Agriculture Night at the stadium, Maryland Farm Bureau will receive a portion of the proceeds from tickets purchased using the code: MFB2019. Purchase tickets here.

 

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  Member Benefits  
  TripBeat  
 

Maryland Farm Bureau Members get access to luxurious resort style and sales like Tripbeat's Bogo Sale! Find the perfect 7-night select $399* Getaway or Preferred stay. Look for an email 48 hours after booking for a code and instructions on how to book your FREE select $399* Getaway! More here.

 

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