Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Preserving Rural Resources Act: Reducing Regulatory Burdens On Our Farmers

Congressman Robert Hurt

Weekly Column 7/08/13

This past week, I traveled along Route 15 visiting individuals, farmers, and small businesses. Hearing the concerns of those living in Danville to Fauquier and Brunswick to Lawrenceville has been my greatest resource as I serve Virginia’s 5th District.

The legislation I have introduced throughout my time in the United States Congress has come straight from the concerns discussed during my travels throughout the 5th District with the people whom I represent. And the Preserving Rural Resources Act is no exception.

There are no greater stewards of the land than our farmers, foresters, and ranchers whose livelihoods depend upon preserving the Commonwealth’s abundant natural resources. The agricultural community, however, continues to suffer from unelected bureaucrats’ misinterpretation of current policy, which has led to the federal over-regulation of the natural resources on their property and has had a significant negative impact on their farms, their small businesses, and their families.

Washington does not know what is best for the people of Virginia’s 5th District, and it is time that the federal government is removed as a roadblock to job creation so that our farmers and small businesses can hire and grow.

That is why my colleague Congressman Jim Costa (D-CA) and I have introduced the Preserving Rural Resources Act. This bipartisan legislation will clarify current law by codifying current exemptions for normal farming, forestry, and ranching activities and allow members of our agricultural and forestry community to utilize the resources in place on their private property in ways that will enhance their agricultural production and activity.

Additionally, this bill will allow our farmers to shift their time and resources from cutting through more government red tape to expanding production. It is critical that we enact commonsense reforms like the Preserving Rural Resources Act to encourage economic growth and get the people of Virginia’s 5th District back to work.

It is high time that Washington is removed as part of the problem, and I will continue to work to turn my constituents’ concerns into legislation that is part of the solution. 

If you need any additional information, please visit my website at hurt.house.gov or call my Washington office: (202) 225-4711, Charlottesville office: (434) 973-9631, Danville office: (434) 791-2596, or Farmville office: (434) 395-0120.