WASHINGTON (Nov. 2, 2012) – With the U.S. House potentially set to take up the Farm Bill in the “lame duck” session that will follow the Nov. 6 elections, the R Street Institute is hosting a Capitol Hill briefing on critical agriculture issues that should be of great concern to both fiscal conservatives and environmental advocates.

The event will focus primarily on R Street President Eli Lehrer’s recently issued paper on the value of tying conservation compliance requirements to federal farm subsidies. While farmers who receive direct payments historically have had to comply with requirements to minimize soil erosion and protect wetlands, no such requirements attach to the heavily subsidized crop insurance program, nor to the enormous new “shallow loss” programs proposed in the bills passed this year by the U.S. Senate and House Agriculture Committee.

Without conservation compliance, the Farm Bill’s programs provide agricultural producers enormous incentives for risk-taking, resulting in both tremendous costs to taxpayers and tremendous devastation to the natural environment. Moreover, the compliance requirements have been shown to work in curbing costs and preserving soil and wetlands, while imposing only minimal burdens on farmers, who are free to avoid the requirements by simply not taking the subsidies.

We invite you to join R Street and representatives from Taxpayers for Common Sense and Strategic Conservation Solutions LLC for a discussion on this important issue.

WHAT: Analysis of conservation compliance programs in the 2012 Farm Bill

WHEN: Nov. 9, 2012, 12:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

WHERE: House Visitor Center, Room #200, U.S. Capitol, Washington D.C.

WHO: Eli Lehrer, R Street Institute

Steve Ellis, Taxpayers for Common Sense

Bruce Knight, Strategic Conservation Solutions LLC

Lunch will be served. Please RSVP by Nov. 6 to R Street Operations Director Erica Schoder at [email protected] or 202.525.5717.

R Street is a non-profit public policy research organization that supports free markets; limited, effective government; and responsible environmental stewardship. It has headquarters in Washington, D.C. and branch offices in Tallahassee, Fla.; Austin, Texas; and Columbus, Ohio. Its website is www.redesign.rstreet.org.

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