Trade Allies Get Tariff Relief and Ag Chair on Farm Bill
**The U.S. will shield a list of trade allies including Europe, Australia, South Korea, Argentina and Brazil from steel and aluminum tariffs.
Agweb.com reports U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer says President Trump has decided to "pause the imposition of the tariffs with respect to those countries."
The exemptions would amount to at least half of U.S. imports in 2017, but it's unclear whether those nations will have to pay the tariffs while negotiating a solution or if relief is more permanent.
**Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue is noting some of the good included in the omnibus spending bill.
After the House passed the bill Thursday, Perdue said the spending plan contains a number of USDA priorities, like fixing the so-called 'grain glitch' 199A problem ... and improving the way we fund wildfire suppression to help better manage our forests.
He also likes increased support for broadband Internet access that's in line with Administration goals and an important boost that should improve the rural economy.
**House Ag Chairman Mike Conaway said he's "going forward" with moving a new farm bill next month despite the refusal of Democrats to negotiate over provisions expanding work requirements and reworking eligibility rules for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
According to Agri-Pulse, the Texas Republican said he was "deeply disappointed, hurt quite frankly, that ranking Democrat Collin Peterson led his team to the sidelines.