Agribusiness Council of Indiana Newsletter
February 5, 2018
From the Desk of the President
Dear ACI Members,

Proactive Voice of Indiana Agribusiness.   Those five words will guide everything ACI does in 2018 and beyond.  Should we sponsor abc event?  Should we host xyz training?  Should we invest in new technology?  Well, if an event, budget expenditure or training doesn't further our mission of serving as the proactive voice of Indiana agribusiness, then we won't be investing our time, talent or treasure.  ACI will be looking to actively partner with members to make sure you have the information you need to drive business outcomes.

Speaking of educational opportunities - at the January conference, over 300 ACI members and industry professionals came to talk about succeeding during a time of change, learn about farmers' relationships with agribusinesses, and discuss lessons learned from dicamba in 2017.  Keynote speaker Damian Mason gave an insightful and entertaining look at the current issues impacting the business of food, fuel, feed and fiber.  We sold out the expo hall for the first time since the conference move to the Downtown Marriott and members took advantage of the convenient downtown location to network with each other and customers. 

During the conference, we also announced the regional meeting schedule for 2018.  In June, ACI will host four regional meetings to discuss the ag economic outlook, infrastructure update, workforce development and talent retention and recruitment issues.
 
·         June 11 - Wabash, IN
·         June 13 - Scottsburg, IN
·         June 14 - Delphi, IN (afternoon/evening meeting)
·         June 28 - Vincennes, IN

In July, ACI will host regional fumigation and grain grading trainings. 
 
·         July 9   - Delphi, IN
·         July 10 - Galveston, IN
·         July 30 - Vincennes, IN
·         July 31 - Jeffersonville, IN

We look forward to bringing ACI to you and working with you to solve business challenges!

Kind regards,

News from the Statehouse
It's almost halftime at the Indiana General Assembly!  The last day for third reading in the House is today. The 29 bills remaining on the calendar include some weighty issues such as asbestos litigation, reorganization of workforce development programs, handgun licensing, and bullying. Once we move past final reading deadlines, both chambers will quickly assign bills to committees.  We anticipate a full calendar of hearing beginning the week of February 12 with only two weeks available for committee meetings. 
 
You will find this week's bill tracking report  here. Please review it closely for any new developments. You may also review the actual language of the bill  here. A more in depth policy report can be found by clicking HERE for the ACI Policy Newsletter.   Please contact Mark Shublak at mark.shublak@icemiller.com or Lesa Dietrick at lesa.dietrick@icemiller.com if you have any questions .
View NGFA's documents on Section 199A tax issue
Source: National Grain & Feed Association
Considerable concern has been raised in the marketplace about how the new Section 199A - included during the waning hours of congressional consideration of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 - is influencing producer marketing decisions. As an organization whose members consist of both farmer-owned cooperatives and independently organized businesses, the NGFA continues to work to arrive at a legislative correction to the unintended consequences of this provision to restore the competitive balance of the marketplace that existed prior to the enactment of Section 199A Dec. 22, 2017.
 
View NGFA's webpage that includes shareable documents summarizing the issue, as well as member updates about NGFA's work with Congress and other stakeholders on developing a solution.
EPA Delays Obama's WOTUS Rule Until 2020 While It Writes Its Own Version
Source: Successful Farming
President Trump set out to erase the Obama-era Waters of the United States rule in his first weeks in office. Now the EPA has finalized an action that should keep the clean water rule from ever taking effect. Administrator  Scott Pruitt has officially set the effective date of the so-called WOTUS rule for early 2020, long after the administration expects its replacement version to be in place. Read the full article by clicking here.
GROWMARK, NRCS sign Memorandum of Understanding
Source: Hoosier Ag Today
Citing its commitment to environmental stewardship and sustainability while working with farmers to enhance profitability through sound agronomic practices, GROWMARK and Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) officials today signed a national Memorandum of Understanding. The Memorandum formalizes a collaborative partnership in which GROWMARK and NRCS will identify collaborative training opportunities to equip GROWMARK System employees with consistent information and technology that's science-based and highlights conservation practices and programs available through NRCS. Click here to read the full story.
Flake lifts Senate hold on Chief Ag Negotiator nominee
Source: National Grain & Feed Association
Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., announced Thursday he had released his hold on the nomination of Gregg Doud, currently president of the Commodity Markets Council, to become chief agricultural negotiator for the U.S. Trade Representative's Office (USTR). In press statement, Flake said he did so after receiving commitments on North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) priorities from both USTR and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah.
 
"Given the importance of U.S. agriculture and what's at stake for them in the NAFTA negotiations, I am pleased that this nomination can move forward," Flake said. The Senate Finance Committee approved Doud's nomination for Senate floor consideration in October. Flake placed the hold on the nomination over concerns related to a U.S. proposal on seasonal produce in NAFTA. According to his announcement, the senator received commitments from Hatch and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to address those concerns. 
Indiana Grain Merchandiser Risk Academy - 2/27-28!
ACI member INTL FC Stone Financial is hosting a  day-and-a-half pure education seminar in Zionsville, Indiana, February 27-28. This program will:
  • help you manage commodity price risk
  • protect and enhance profit margin
  • increase flow/grain origination
This program is appropriate for all levels of grain merchandisers and feed manufacturers, but is also designed for financial institutions who do business with merchandisers and traders. Individuals with more experience may appreciate this refresher session, as it will provide practical experiences from seasoned veterans.  Click HERE  for registration information and more details including Early Bird rates.
Registration Open for
2018 Midwest Women in Ag Conf.
Women who work in the agricultural industry can network and learn about topics ranging from risk management to herb gardening at the   2018 Midwest Women in Agriculture Conference.

The conference will be held February 21-22 at the Horizon Convention Center in Muncie, Indiana. There will also be an optional pre-conference session on February 20 and a special program available for young ladies in grades 8-12. For more information or to register, click here.
Weekly Washington Report - 2-5-18
(by Steve Kopperud)
Click  HERE  to access the full Washington Report featuring these important stories:
  • Perdue was 'Designated Survivor,' Watches State of the Union on TV at 'Undisclosed Location'
  • Trump State of the Union Speech Long on Familiar Policy Targets, Short on Details
  • EPA Notes
    • Taking One for the Team, Pruitt Testifies at Senate EPW Hearing 
    • Carper Says He'll Block EPA Nominees until Trump Withdraws CEQ Nomination
    • Pruitt Says WOTUS Fix Final by End of Year
    • EPA to Coordinate with Commerce, Interior on ES Pesticide Reviews; Other Rule Reworks Coming 
    • NAFTA 2.0 Round Six Shows 'Some Progress,' Two More Sessions Set 
    • Flake Finally Lifts Hold on USTR Nominee Doud
    • Word on Sec. 199A Fix Remains Elusive
    • RFA Wants to Know about 'Small Refinery' RFS Exemptions
    • FSMA Roll-out Prompts USDA, FDA Deal to Work Together on Produce Safety, Biotech
    • USDA Goes Internet on Farmer Service, Market Data 
2018
ACI Board of Directors
  
ACI Chair
Rod Miller
Crop Fertility Specialist
  
Vice Chair
Drew Garretson
Winfield United

ACI Secretary
Marv Ulmet
Bane-Welker Equipment
  
ACI Treasurer
 Jim Engelberth
Dow AgroSciences
  
ACI BOARD MEMBERS

Justin Daugherty
GROWMARK

Ben Green
Purple Ribbon Seeds

George Greenwood
ADM Grain 

Jason Helms
AgReliant Genetics

John Larimer
Lords Seed
  
Alan Lowe
Lowe's Pellets & Grain

Brad McCord
Co-Alliance
  
Mike Schweickert
J. P. Morgan Securities, LLC

 ACI   Ex-Officio
Dave Reichhart
AgPlus
  
ISTA Ex-Officio
Rodney Busick
Syngenta

Ex-Officio
Alan Galbreth
ICIA

Ex-Officio
Dr. Jayson Lusk
Purdue
Dept of Ag Economics

Ex-Officio
Don Robison
OISC

Ex-Officio
Dr. Ron Turco
Purdue
Dept of Agronomy

Our Vision:  
The Agribusiness Council of Indiana will be the premier advocate serving members' business interests.
  
Our Mission: 
 The Agribusiness Council of Indiana supports members with legislative representation, industry insight and regulatory guidance.


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