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Farmers Union members meet with Ingebrigtsen

Contributed photo Those discussing farm issues at the state Capitol recently included (left to right) Craig Kruse of Browerville, Jennes Swanson of Hoffman, Al Loken of Long Prairie, Karen Perish of Browerville, Senator Bill Ingebrigtsen, Mike Stine of Long Prairie, Marvin Jensen of Kensington, Lee Johnson from the Minnesota Farmers Union and Wayne Boettcher, Minnesota Farmers Union Field Representative from Isanti.

Minnesota Farmers Union (MFU) members from the northwest and west central regions of the state recently went to the state Capitol to discuss Farmers Union policy and the 2009 legislative session with legislators.

"This is a chance for the legislators to hear from Farmers Union members about the immediate needs of rural Minnesota," said Doug Peterson, Minnesota Farmers Union president. "It also gives our members a chance to let the senators and representatives know about our Farmers Union policy, and why it is important to them."

Farmers Union policy issues that came up in discussions with state senators and representatives were: protecting the state agriculture budget; stabilizing property taxes; repealing the changes made last year to the Green Acres Program; supporting universal health care; financial support to those impacted by the bovine tuberculosis outbreak; extension of the 2009 sunset date of the farmer-lender mediation program; support for local control in making siting decisions that deal with livestock facilities; a strong corporate farm law; support to achieve conformity with the Minnesota estate tax, and section 179 of the federal tax code; and bonding requests for the Rural Finance Authority.