That cheering you heard yesterday afternoon in TU offices was in response to the Senate vote yesterday to reauthorize the Farm Bill–it’s a huge victory for farms and fish. That’s right – we care about the Farm Bill. And so should you, fellow anglers, if you care about the health of our rivers, streams and wildlfe, and fishing opportunities. The fact is, millions of acres of prime habitat for fish and wildlife are on private lands, and Farm Bill conservation programs help Trout Unlimited work with farmers and ranchers across the country to upgrade old irrigation systems, remove or retrofit small dams that block fish passage, and improve riparian habitat. This benefits ag operations while improving the fishing for everyone downstream. Read more here about why TU supports the Farm Bill. For those cynical about Washington politics, the Farm Bill passage shows that maybe our politicians can get something done after all, by working together on pragmatic common interests. As TU’s Russ Schnitzer said in a press release:
“Farm Bill conservation programs encourage partnerships and collaboration among farmers, agencies, and conservation groups such as Trout Unlimited. The results speak for themselves—cleaner water, healthy soil, more abundant wildlife and fish populations, more viable farms and ranches, and stronger rural communities.”
We can all get behind those goals. Now it’s the House lawmakers’ turn to pass a version of the Farm Bill — let’s hope they follow the Senate’s strong lead.