September 2017

Happy Fall!  Harvest season is upon us, and I know that everyone is busy with the hustle and bustle, but I wanted to make sure all of you were provided with an update on the happenings at farm bureau lately.

This past month has been a whirlwind of busyness. There was much discussion over SB 623, and its impacts on agriculture.  For those unfamiliar with its title, this is the fertilizer mil assessment bill for the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund.  Although there appears to be good aspects of the bill, the board hear at MCFB felt that at this point there was no need to support another tax on agriculture.  It was also encouraged that the East San Joaquin Water Quality Coalition refrain from supporting the bill for the same reasons.  The bill has moved to the 2-year list, and we will continue to monitor it.  If anyone is interested in knowing more about it and the discussions had, please feel free to reach out to me at any time.

At the local level MCFB has been working the past couple of months on language for the Large Development Groundwater Ordinance recently adopted by the County.  After many discussions, language submitted by MCFB was accepted and included.  We are relieved to have this huge task finally put to bed, ending litigation over the Gunner Ranch West Project.  All parties worked very well together, and MCFB commends the County’s efforts to get this done.

As for SGMA, we are still keeping an eye on the water situation.  MCFB has been very involved with the White Area Landowners, however I would like everyone to rest assured that we are actively engaged on behalf of our members as a whole, and participating with all agencies involved to ensure that not only those within the County responsibility areas are being adequately represented, but that water district members are as well.  There are regular conversations with irrigation district staff and board members, as well as attendance to their board meetings when possible.  On that note, I’d like to point out that the County is forming a technical advisory committee for their GSA, and are looking for people to fill seats.  As the other GSAs get up and running I would encourage everyone to attend their meetings, as MCFB intends to, and get involved during stakeholder engagement.  I know, most are too busy to make these meetings, so I’d ask that you please reach out to us at MCFB and share your concerns so that we can make sure we’re addressing what you would like us to.

On a more positive note, once again I would like to mention that MCFB’s Ag United Harvest Celebration and Annual Meeting is right around the corner, October 15th.  It will be a change of pace this year, as we liven things up a bit by having the Peterson Farming Brothers share some of their well-known parodies.  If you have never heard of them, I’d suggest a Google search for some great entertainment about the realities of farming and agriculture as a whole.  Prime Rib will be served, and this year we’ve asked our local dignitaries to participate by contributing to a celebrity dessert auction.  So come hungry!  Please call the office for tickets.

As always if there are any questions or concerns about anything MCFB is doing or is involved with please do not hesitate to call.

Hope everyone has a safe and bountiful harvest!  See you all in October at our Annual Meeting.

-Christina

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