Rural Finance Authority
MFU strongly supports increased bonding for the Rural Finance Authority (RFA) at the MN Department of Agriculture (MDA). The RFA partners with local lenders to offer low-interest loans that help small and mid-sized farmers start and reinvest in their farm business. MFU also supports expanding the use of MDA’s Disaster Recovery Loan Program.
MFU strongly supports initiatives that would lower the cost of health care for farmers and rural Minnesotans, including a public option that would allow farmers to ‘buy-in’ to a MinnesotaCare-type program.
Prescription drug prices
MFU supports legislation to lower the cost of prescription drugs, including insulin, recognizing the role that high drug prices play in increasing the overall cost of health care.
MFU supports continued, strong funding for MDA, the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute (AURI) and the Board of Animal Health (BAH). MFU opposes any cuts to agriculture programs funded by the Legislature in 2019.
Section 179 conformity
MFU supports full conformity with Section 179 for equipment expensing.
MFU supports the increased use of biofuels, including a move toward statewide E15.
MFU supports working with regulators to address the backlog in meat processing for small-scale producers, particularly those using the state’s ‘equal to’ program. We also support making needed upgrades to the meat processing facility at the Northeast Regional Corrections Center (NERCC).
MFU supports smart investments in farm safety, including programs that help farmers invest in safer equipment.
MFU supports funding for ag education at all levels, including 4-H, Extension, and Farm Business Management programs. More specifically, we support:
- creating a ‘supporting agriculture’ license plate from which the proceeds support 4H and FFA.
- investing in ag education at UMN’s regional centers, including the organics facilities at the University of Minnesota Morris.
MFU strongly supports a long-term, sustainable plan to fund transportation. This includes a responsible increase to the state’s gasoline tax to pay for roads and bridges.