Local thanks Sen. Tester for helping small farmers and ranchers



U.S. Sent. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) deserves our thanks for introducing a bill that only a working farmer would have pushed for — legislation to eliminate a burdensome reporting requirement that would be a huge waste of small farmers’ time and money.

Federal rules would require farms to report the air emissions by monitoring and keeping track of animal waste. Yep, you read that right — the government wants farmers to count the manure produced on their farms. Maybe for giant feedlots this regulation makes sense, but for small farmers and ranchers, it’s just one more thing to add onto an incredibly lengthy to-do lists with very few resources to do it.

Montana farmers have been exempt from this rule for decades, but on May 1, that exemption was set to be thrown out because of a court ruling in Washington D.C. That’s why the Senate’s only working farmer, Jon Tester, backed this bill to make sure that Montana farmers stay free from this regulation. Most politicians in Washington don’t get it — small farmers rely on people like Jon to make sure we have a voice in Congress. As you put it, Sen. Tester: Thanks for telling government to “cut the crap!”

Mark Fix

Miles City