Important adjustments to the Farm Bill are now in the works, thanks in large part to a Midwest senator recently honored for her support of the floral industry.
SAF CEO Kate Penn met recently with Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan), who earlier this month was inducted into the Michigan Floral Foundation Hall of Fame.
Stabenow was among the lawmakers who co-sponsored the bipartisan Farm Bill, and Penn took the opportunity to remind the senator of technical fixes to the bill that would improve the floral industry’s ability to leverage research dollars for specialty crops improvements. Within two hours of that conversation, Stabenow and her staff had fast-tracked those fixes, flagging them as a high priority for future congressional attention.
The quick turnaround is a testament to the floral industry’s importance to the U.S. economy and to the common-sense solutions SAF advances, Penn said.
“These meetings with lawmakers are an important part of SAF’s strategy to advocate in Washington for the floral industry and to promote meaningful change and find solutions for the growth-minded floral professionals that we serve,” she added.
SAF’s senior lobbyist Joe Bischoff, Ph.D., also met last week with Reps. Jim Costa (D-California) and Kurt Schrader (D-Oregon).
Bischoff used that valuable face time to bring up issues related to trade, appropriations, research funding and immigration reform, and how those issues directly affect floral professionals.
Ready to do your part and make your voice heard? Register today for SAF’s annual Congressional Action Days, March 9-10 in Washington, D.C.
Mary Westbrook is the editor in chief of Floral Management magazine.