Noem introduces sodsaver provision for farm bill
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Reps. Kristi Noem and Rep. Tim Walz introduced legislation Thursday to encourage good land stewardship practices and preserve habitats.
Noem, a South Dakota Republican, and Walz, a Minnesota Democrat, want to protect habitat for pheasants, ducks and other wildlife on native sod and on grasslands that haven't been farmed in the past.
The legislation would reduce crop insurance assistance for the first four years for crops grown on native sod and certain grasslands converted to cropland.
By reducing crop insurance assistance so that it is proportionate with the production capability of this land, rather than insuring it at the same rate as land that has been farmed for years, this legislation could save taxpayers nearly $200 million over 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
"South Dakota farmers already strike a healthy balance between agriculture production and conservation, and this legislation helps them continue that trend," Noem said.
The sodsaver legislation introduced by Reps. Noem and Walz is identical to the provision included by Sen. John Thune in the farm bill passed by the Senate Agriculture Committee.