Legislature looking to save more farms from going out of business

US - Without another infusion of state aid, more dairy farmers reeling under the weight of low milk prices and rising costs may soon be forced out of business.
calendar icon 30 January 2007
clock icon 1 minute read
So Vermont lawmakers are considering a bailout like the one offered to dairy farmers last summer. "We think the need is every bit as great as it was last July when the Emergency Board acted. In fact, it may be more critical now," said Agriculture Committee Vice Chairman Al Perry, D-Richford.

The Douglas administration, however, says it isn't sure where the money would come from if the Legislature decided to expand on the emergency assistance it offered last year.

"The governor has stated publicly that trying to find the money has been very, very difficult and (he's) not sure where it would come from during this process," said Deputy Agriculture Secretary David Lane.

Farmers have been hard hit by poor weather, high fuel and feed costs and low milk prices. Last summer, the state agreed to give $8.6 million to them through milk check supplements to help them through the crisis.

Most involved in the industry believed that farmers would be further helped by an emergency aid package that was sitting in Congress and was expected to pump $54 million into Vermont. But that bill got stalled and has not yet moved in the new Congress, putting some farmers in dire economic straits.

Source: Boston.com
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