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Farm Bill Deconstructed

March 11, 2011
by Kasi Boyd

Note: If you’re new to the Farm Bill, also see Farm Bill Jargon 101.

The Farm Bill is a proposal, written up and hopefully passed through the House and Senate and on to the President to sign every 5 to 7 years. Here are a  few current Farm Bill facts:

 

  • The Farm Bill is currently comprised of 15 Titles.
  • Each Title is separated into a varying number of provisions and sub-provisions and sub-sub-provisions.
  • Provisions are how a bill is compartmentalized into sections with correlating numbers.
  • Each Title may have as few as 2 provisions and 9 sub-provisions, as does Title XIII or as many as 7 provisions and 50 sub-provisions, as does Title I.

It looks like this:

TITLE I—COMMODITY PROGRAMS

Sec. 1001. Definitions.

Subtitle A—Direct Payments and Counter-Cyclical Payments

Sec. 1101. Base acres.

Sec. 1102. Payment yields.

Sec. 1103. Availability of direct payments.

Sec. 1104. Availability of counter-cyclical payments.

Sec. 1105. Average crop revenue election program.

Sec. 1106. Producer agreement required as condition of provision of payments.

Sec. 1107. Planting flexibility.

Sec. 1108. Special rule for long grain and medium grain rice.

Sec. 1109. Period of effectiveness.

Subtitle B—Marketing Assistance Loans and Loan Deficiency Payments

When speaking or writing about the different sections of the bill people call them provisions or sub-provisions. When you look at the actual bill above it is divided into sections with numbers to simplify referencing because the bill itself is very long – 1001 pages!

 

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