For many producers across Washington, the 2020 legislative session was challenging. But regardless of commodity, one of the bright spots came late in the session with the passage of House Resolution 4653, honoring the state’s Ag industry.
Resolution author Tom Dent says as it always has, the farming community is vital to Washington, its economy and its people and the resolution recognizes that. He added this resolution is even more important today with the gulf between the farm and non-ag community continuing to grow, which Dent says in many ways is surprising.
“On the other hand, I’m not surprised, because there’ so much more push back from the environmental side, that talk about everything that farmers and ranchers do is wrong. And they are painting us in a bad light, which is where the resolution begins. We have to tell our own story.”
Dent said he was encouraged by the positive reaction he received in Olympia to HR 4653. But he was quick to note, the Ag community must remain active. He said between now at the 2021 session, it’s vital to get to know the folks that represent you, build relationships, and be willing to attend different farm tours.
“Get some folks out there, and meet the legislators that we bring over there from the west side, build those relationships and talk to them about what we really do, because the reality is, they don’t know what we really do.”
Dent said that needs to create momentum that carries into January, so when bad legislation is proposed in the 2021 session, farmers will try travel to Olympia to testify in favor of the farm community.
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