The 2022 session, according to the Washington Farm Bureau, has not been one that has been favorable for family farms across the Evergreen state. Tom Davis, Director of Government Relations with the Farm Bureau said conservation issues were especially challenging this year. From House Bill 1838 to House Bill 1117, Davis noted lawmakers proposed several pieces of legislation that looked to make farming more difficult, all in the name of salmon preservation. But he noted there are already a host of conservation programs, such as VSP and others, but they have been woefully underfunded by the state for two decades.


“What’s interesting is, there’s strength in numbers and working and working outside of your normal sphere, and we’ve joined with actually the Nature Conservancy to send a letter to the budget committee members asking for support for these conservation program funds, because we share a common interest there with the Nature Conservancy, and I think it helps them and it helps us.”

Davis noted conservation and the environment has not been the only issue of concern. He noted the state’s transportation package will cost Washington tax payers, and won’t benefit the state’s farming community.

“There weren’t enough projects aimed at Eastern Washington, especially those that helped the farm to market roads, so to us, that was a short coming.  We think budgets like this need to be bipartisan to ensure they are well crafted.  And then another issue, it relied on some gimmicks to fund it and one of those gimmicks was the export fuel tax.”

And while that six cent tax on fuel shipped from Washington to neighboring states was dropped, Davis noted it didn’t change the fact that the package is a bad one for rural Washington.

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