Action Alert: The Sustainable Farms and Fields Grant Program

Author(s): 
Chrys Ostrander

The Sustainable Farms and Fields Grant Program, a bill in the Washington Legislature, needs YOUR support!

If your Washington State Legislator is listed below:

1) Contact them and urge them to SUPPORT the Sustainable Farms and Fields Grant Program.
2) Urge them to give the bill a public hearing in their committee, the House Rural Development, Agriculture, & Natural Resources Committee, in February.
3) Attend the hearing if you can (possibly Feb 3 or 4). Attend to show support or to give testimony. Check the committee schedule:
https://app.leg.wa.gov/committeeschedules#//8221

SENATE BILL 5947 - AN ACT Relating to establishing the sustainable farms and fields grant program.

"The legislature finds and declares that Washington's working farms and ranches are integral to the state's environment and economy. The legislature further finds that opportunities exist to reduce fossil-fuel energy usage on farms and ranches, including that which is embedded in fertilizers, pesticides, and pumped water. Reducing fossil fuel use on farms and ranches will reduce local and global pollution while helping farmers and ranchers save money. Moreover, the legislature finds that opportunities exist to enhance soil health by adopting precision agriculture and regenerative agriculture practices that increase soil organic carbon levels, and to store carbon in standing trees. It is therefore the intent of the legislature to provide financial assistance to voluntary farmers and ranchers who adopt practices that reduce fossil fuel inputs in their operations and increase the quantity of carbon stored on their land."

SB 5947 was sponsored by equal numbers of Republicans and Democrats. Many organizations support the sustainable farms and fields bill as well – Carbon Washington, WA Association of Conservation Districts, American Farmland Trust, Tulalip Tribe, Tilth, Audubon Washington, The Nature Conservancy, Spokane Food Policy Council and more. Ninety-nine farms, food system stakeholders, and environmental organizations from 11 counties across Washington State have signed a joint letter of support urging lawmakers to pass this important legislation.

Visit Carbon Washington's SB5947 information page:
https://carbonwa.org/carbonwas-sustainable-farms-and-fields-campaign/

Committee members. You can contact them through their websites.

Blake, Brian (D)
Chair
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Blake

Shewmake, Sharon (D)
Vice Chair
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Shewmake

Chandler, Bruce (R)
Ranking Minority Member
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Chandler

Dent, Tom (R)
Assistant Ranking Minority Member
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Dent

Chapman, Mike (D)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Chapman

Dye, Mary (R)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Dye

Fitzgibbon, Joe (D)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Fitzgibbon

Kretz, Joel (R)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Kretz

Lekanoff, Debra (D)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Lekanoff

Orcutt, Ed (R)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Orcutt

Pettigrew, Eric (D)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Pettigrew

Ramos, Bill (D)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Ramos

Schmick, Joe (R)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Schmick

Springer, Larry (D)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Springer

Walsh, Jim (R)
http://leg.wa.gov/house/representatives/pages/default.aspx#Walsh

Edition: 
Action Alert January, 2020