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OEFFA Farm Policy Bulletin

Monthly News Bulletin

July 1, 2014

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In a few days we celebrate the anniversary of our country's declaration of independence from Great Britain. That same spirit continues today as people declare independence from the toxic impacts caused by fracking, and seek the freedom to choose food made without genetic engineering, and grow food and raise livestock without threat of GE contamination.

Keep Your Fracking Waste

Connecticut joined Vermont in setting a fracking waste disposal ban for their state. A three year moratorium was signed into law in June. Legislators in New York and New Jersey are also looking to prohibit fracking waste disposal. 

What's Up Guv?

Despite statements from Ohio Governor John Kasich’s staff that drilling in state parks was off the table as of August 2012, communication between the governor’s office and Natural Resources department staff reveal a post-Thanksgiving meeting was held to discuss the readiness of fracking in state parks, forests, and wildlife areas.  Gov. Kasich’s spokesperson claims this was “just a status update meeting.”

Wait Just an Organic Cotton Picking Minute 

A legal petition filed by 20 organic farmer and consumer groups called on U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to protect the responsibilities and permanence of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), who is charged with protecting the organic label’s integrity.  Recent changes move the board into more of an advisory capacity, and the petition calls on the USDA to reverse its actions.  

Not So Fast...

A Thurston County, WA judge rejected the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) motion to dismiss a complaint filed by the State Attorney General, who found that the GMA failed to follow campaign financing reporting requirements by hiding the names of corporate contributors, and now could face up to $30 million in fines.  

The GMA is keeping the court system on the other side of the country busy as well as it filed a lawsuit against the State of Vermont for its recent enactment of a mandatory GE labeling law.  The state expected to be challenged, and set up a $1.5 million legal fund.

Latest Farm Bill Program Deadlines

Clermont County forest landowners can access management resources to address invasive plant and insects, including the Asian Longhorn Beetle, bush honeysuckle, and grapevine. The deadline for Asian Longhorn Beetle (ALB) Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Initiative is July 18. On July 8 at 7 p.m. at the Grant Career Center in Bethel, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Services (NRCS) will host a public meeting to explain how the initiative works and answer questions.

NRCS will partner with landowners to design honeybee friendly habitat, plus help them cover some of the cost of creating it through the Honeybee Pollinator Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).  Farmers with cropland, pastureland, forestland, and farmsteads in Allen, Ashtabula, Auglaize, Cuyahoga, Defiance, Erie, Fulton, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Lake, Lorain, Lucas, Mercer, Ottawa, Paulding, Putnam, Sandusky, Seneca, Shelby, Van Wert, Williams, Wood, and Wyandot counties can apply for this program. The deadline is July 18. 

REMEMBER: If you are interested in accessing any NRCS program and are new (to the program), you should apply as soon as possible at your local office to allow enough time to complete the application and establish eligibility for NRCS conservation program assistance. Contact the OEFFA office if you need assistance.

Have A Happy Independence Day!

Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association
41 Croswell Rd., Columbus, OH 43214
(614) 421-2022 www.oeffa.org

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