Idaho’s farmers, ranchers, anglers, and the countless jobs that make up Idaho’s agribusiness sector are at the top of my mind in Washington, D.C. As the single largest contributor to Idaho’s economy, making upwards of 20% of our yearly GDP, agriculture is the backbone of our state.

Idaho is home to over 24,500 family farms that produce over 144 commodities, including potatoes, beef cattle, hay, wheat, milk, barley, and sugar beets. This makes Idaho the top producer of many consumer products. For example, the Idaho Potato which averages 32% of the country's production of potatoes in the U.S. 

Idaho’s agriculture sector is constantly changing while also becoming more efficient-- and the regulations over this sector should do the same. Unfortunately, there is no shortage of outdated federal regulations in dire need of common sense reforms. Congress needs to update the Endangered Species Act (ESA), National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Waters of the United States (WOTUS), and additional rules and regulations coming out of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 

The ESA was last updated in 1988 and can inhibit common sense federal land management, less grazing, and can lead to catastrophic wildfires. Additionally,  the pre Trump Administration WOTUS rule sought to bring federal overreach into local and state management of irrigation canals and waterways. Lastly, we must recognize and find common ground on EPA's regulation of pesticides and other petrochemicals. 

Overall, I can assure you I will do everything in my capacity to advocate for Idaho state and local stakeholders to address our local issues-- rather than rigid, out of touch federal regulators. Idaho farmers and ranchers are foundational to our state’s economy, lifestyle, and values. I am proud of their contributions to families in the Gem State and around the world.

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