We’re roughly three weeks away from a new Congress being sworn in.  But before that happens, Dan Newhouse is hopeful the current Congress will take up the issue of Ag labor.  The Farm Workforce Modernization Act, which has cleared the U.S. House twice, currently sits in the Senate, waiting for a vote.  And while Newhouse said he has several colleagues and allies working in the Senate, he can't say the FMWA is on the verge of getting that needed vote.


“In congressional time, there's still several weeks to go here so I haven't given up hope on those getting it done.  But frankly too it's a little frustrating that we're still at this point.”


While time is drawing short, and there doesn’t appear to be a political will right now to address farm labor in D.C., Newhouse remains optimistic lawmakers can get this done.


“I haven't really thought about 2023 yet and what we may or may not do.  We're totally focused on getting this across the finish line this term.  If that doesn't happen then we'll have to regroup and decide what the best strategy to take, but for now all focus is on getting us done in this term.”


Newhouse said the Farm Workforce Modernization Act would create a secure, reliable agriculture labor program, thus removing opportunities to work illegally in the United States.  The Chair of the Western Caucus added the Act would strengthen U.S. border security, lower food costs for Americans, all while ensuring farmers and ranchers have a stable, legal workforce for years to come.


A recent Report from the Cato Institute looked at the economic impact the FWMA would have on the U.S. farming community.


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