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Congress is currently putting together the 2018 Farm Bill. Updates will be posted as the Committee progresses. Check in for weekly news and resources.

On December 22, 2017, Congressman Cramer shared his support for a strong farm bill and the work done by the House Agriculture Committee to deliver a bill in 2018:

Section 199 - What does it mean for you?

For tax years beginning after December 31, 2017, taxpayers other than corporations will generally be entitled to a deduction for each taxable year equal to the sum of:

1. The lesser of (A) the taxpayer’s “combined qualified business income amount” or (B) 20 percent of the excess of the taxpayer’s taxable income for the taxable year over any net capital gain plus the aggregate amount of qualified cooperative dividends, plus

2. The lesser of (A) 20 percent of the aggregate amount of the qualified cooperative dividends of the taxpayer for the taxable year or (B) the taxpayer’s taxable income (reduced by the net capital gain). 

Read more by clicking here.

Pasture, Rangeland, and Forage (PRF) 

  1. Designed to provide insurance coverage on pasture, rangeland, or forage acres from risks of forage loss due to lack of precipitation.
  2. Learn more here:
  3. Link for support tool:



The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it has approved a request by the North Dakota delegation to allow for emergency grazing on Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) lands. According to a notice provided to Cramer’s office, emergency grazing will apply to counties that are in D2 and D3 levels of drought. The USDA will continue to add counties on a weekly basis if drought conditions continue to deteriorate. The emergency grazing period will run through September 30th unless conditions improve. Secretary Perdue announced the USDA is authorizing emergency haying starting July 16 for livestock producers dealing with the ongoing drought. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, primary disaster counties suffer from a drought intensity value of D2-D4, which ranges from severe to exceptional drought.​ Learn more at

  • Who should I contact to discuss options for my operation?
    • First, contact your county United States Department of Agriculture - Farm Service Agency (USDA-FSA) office. For contact information to your local office, please click here. You may also want to interact with the North Dakota FSA office as well as other North Dakota state and federal officeholders including my office.
  • Info on Emergency Haying and Grazing of CRP
    • Under abnormally dry conditions, the USDA-FSA can authorize emergency haying or grazing of eligible conservation reserve program (CRP) acres to alleviate a shortfall of forage.
    • Like with all Farm Bill programs, the potential for emergency haying and grazing is only meant as a lifeline to our livestock producers.  I count on local, state and national FSA to reasonably meet the needs of our cattlemen and cattlewomen without distorting the market depended upon by our hay producers.
    • Emergency grazing is permitted for certain counties in North Dakota based on level of drought.      
    • Click here for detailed information on options provided by the USDA-FSA including ineligible acres for certain CRP practices such as wetland restoration (CP 23) and duck nesting habitat (CP 37).
  • Am I eligible for the Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP)?
    • The LFP makes payments to eligible livestock producers who have suffered losses on drought-affected pastureland.  Payments are triggered by the drought intensity level for an individual county, as published in the U.S. Drought Monitor. To view the current Drought Monitor, click here.
    • See this fact sheet for more information.
    • See table on the Livestock Forage Program below courtesy of the Congressional Research Service.

Drought Monitor Intensity

Time Period

No. of Monthly Payments

D2 (severe drought)

For at least eight consecutive weeks during the normal grazing period

one monthly payment

D3 (extreme drought)

At any time during the normal grazing period

three monthly payments

D3 (extreme drought)

For at least four weeks during the normal grazing period

four monthly payments

D4 (exceptional drought)

At any time during the normal grazing period

four monthly payments

D4 (exceptional drought)

For four weeks (not necessarily consecutive) during the normal grazing period

five monthly payments

  • Can I waive my 30-day ownership insurance requirement?
    The USDA has authorized up to a 12 month exemption to the FSA farm loan requirement that borrowers maintain physical control of livestock during the term of the loan.The USDA will also allow insurance providers to waive the 30-day ownership requirement for Livestock Risk Protection (LRP) Specific Coverage Endorsements upon an individual producer providing proof of ownership. More information can be found here.
  • What should I do when my crops are damaged by drought?
    Contact your AIP (agent) before putting spring-planted crop acres to another use such as harvesting for silage, diverting irrigation water, destroying the crop, or abandoning the acres. Notice of damage must be given within 72 hours of the initial discovery of damage or loss of production, but not later than 15 days after the end of the insurance period, even if the crop has not been harvested. It is very important to work closely with your AIP before making any changes to the care of the insured crop. The AIP must have a chance to appraise and release the acres before the crop is put to another use, destroyed, or abandoned. If an accurate appraisal cannot be made, or you disagree with the appraisal at the time acreage is to be destroyed or no longer cared for, you and the AIP can select representative sample areas of the crop to be left intact for future appraisal purposes. In this case, the representative sample areas must continue to be cared for, with the exception of irrigation, until the final appraisal can be made.

  • Should I continue to care for crops damaged by drought?
    Crops that have been damaged and will be taken to harvest must be cared for and maintained using generally recognized good farming practices. Agricultural experts in the area can advise on farming practices required to maintain the production in the field and to help protect the crop from further damage. With the AIP's agreement, you may destroy or abandon the crop and leave representative sample areas in accordance with paragraph 88 of the Loss Adjustment Manual (LAM). The representative sample areas must be maintained as if the entire crop was left intact until the AIP conducts a final inspection and releases the representative sample areas. Failure to properly maintain the crop following damage could result in a determination that the cause of loss was not covered and, therefore, no claim payment is due.

  • Contact Information:
    • Your County FSA Office: find your local office here
    • Congressman Cramer's Office: (202) 225-2611
    • North Dakota FSA Office: (701) 239-5224
  • Additional Resources:

Click here to view disaster declaration for North Dakota. Click here to view disaster declaration for South Dakota. Click here to view disaster declaration for Montana.