California agricultural fields. Photo by Chris Stone
California agricultural fields. Photo by Chris Stone

Congressman Darrell Issa hosted a Farm Bill Listening Session with farmers, ranchers, and members of the Riverside County and San Diego County Farm Bureaus to discuss issues that farmers and the entire agriculture industry of the 48th district face – and how to develop lasting solutions that are overdue at the national level.

The Monday session included a dialogue among the growers of avocados, potted and fresh-cut flowers, berries and oranges, as well as cattle ranchers.

The session and conversations between participants and Congressman Issa specifically focused on comprehensive water usage and storage, along with the high cost of scarce water resources to California farmers.

The continuing review of federal land management policy and environmental regulations was also a significant topic, including the ways this hinders effective and efficient cattle grazing. Finally, others detailed the importance of research and innovation toward developing better farm technologies – and how that can be done in the face of oppressive California regulations.

After the session, Congressman Issa made the following statement:

“This year’s reauthorization of the Farm Bill provides an ideal opportunity to ensure the continued success of California farmers and agriculture. For 80 years this consensus legislation has sought to keep food prices fair for farmers and consumers, ensure an adequate food supply, and protect and sustain America’s vital natural resources. As times have changed, so have the needs of our farmers, ranchers, and the entire ag community, and their voices are going to be heard loud and clear as we finalize this year’s Farm Bill.”

Rep. Issa specifically noted that the listening session was held so he can deliver the area’s unique needs to the House Agriculture Committee as it works to update the Farm Bill. All stakeholders of the 48th District are encouraged to submit input to Congressman Issa for transmission to the Committee by March 27.

Darrell Issa is the Representative of California’s 48th Congressional District. The District encompasses the central and eastern parts of San Diego County and a portion of Riverside County, including the communities of Fallbrook, Valley Center, Ramona, Escondido, Santee, Lakeside, Poway, Temecula, Murrieta, and the mountain and desert areas of the San Diego-Imperial County line. Issa served as the Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform from 2011-2015.