The U.S. Senate passed JOBS Act legislation last week, which will help American agriculture expand European markets for a number of U.S. farm products. It also will win important incentives for home-grown renewable fuels, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation.

“We greatly appreciate the Senate’s perseverance to pass this bill that, for many reasons, is important to America’s farm and ranch families,” says AFBF President Bob Stallman. “We now turn our focus to moving this bill to the President’s desk – as soon as possible.”

Sales of U.S. farm goods to Europe has been curtailed by excessive EU taxation.
The World Trade Organization allowed such tax when it ruled the U.S. Extraterritorial Income Exclusion program was illegal. The EU tax, which can be as high as 17 percent, is applied to many U.S. agricultural products. The Senate measure, and an earlier House bill, changes that prohibited program.

Also included in both measures are provisions to enhance the production of home-grown, renewable fuels, and provide economic relief to farmers who raise tobacco. On the energy provision, Stallman said AFBf supports the Senate language, which includes tax incentives contained in an earlier comprehensive energy bill.

“The Senate bill provides specific provisions related to tax incentives for ethanol and biodiesel, in addition to wind and biomass energy,” Stallman says. “The Senate bill also includes incentives needed to boost domestic oil and gas production.

“These energy provisions are more encompassing than the House version. The renewable-fuel incentives will expand the market for U.S. crops, lessen our nation’s reliance on imported oil and help make our air cleaner.”

The House and Senate bills reduce taxes paid by farmers, ranchers and woodlot owners by allowing immediate deduction of business expenses, removing limits on farm-income averaging, helping farmers forced to sell cattle due to drought and treating all timber sales in a consistent manner.

Source: American Farm Bureau Federation.