Ag Suicide Bill and USDA Farm Tariff Protection
**A bipartisan group of 10 farm state representatives introduced the Stemming the Tide of Rural Economic Stress and Suicide Act for inclusion in the next farm bill.
The STRESS Act amends the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, which gives states resources to help farmers and ranchers with mental health treatment.
A CDC report finds those working in the farming, fishing, and forestry have the highest rate of suicide overall.
**President Trump is urging the USDA to consider options to protect farmers from Chinese tariffs, including the purchase of surplus commodities to prop up prices.
According to agriculture.com, Deputy Ag Secretary Steve Censky says we have broad powers to shield farmers and ranchers and are looking at all options.
The Section 32 program buys excess commodities for donation. The USDA also buys goods for distribution through school nutrition programs and can create programs and spend money through its Commodity Credit Corp, often called USDA's bank.
**Farm and biofuels groups say "enough is enough" as outrage grows over the Environmental Protection Agency granting numerous small refinery hardship waivers, combined with the approval of Philadelphia Energy Solutions bankruptcy agreement absolving the oil refiner of the majority of its Renewable Fuel Standard obligations.
According to AgWired.com, the National Corn Growers Association and state corn growers sent a letter to EPA demanding full transparency for small refiner exemption evaluations and an end to "backdoor reductions to the RFS."