Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Eggs and Issues, Governors and Grants

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Eggs and Issues, Governors and Grants

Article excerpt

Ag banker Steve Lindholm wears two hats: head of banks in both Clarkfield and in nearby Granite Falls, seat of Yellow Medicine County. In Granite Falls he's also the president-elect of the Chamber of Commerce, and in this role he found himself at a town meeting, or, since the meetings are typically held over breakfast, an "eggs and issues," as they call it locally.

The issue served up that morning was the pending trouble in the farm belt, and what government could be counted on to do about it. The 40-odd locals at the meeting turned for one answer to the representatives of the state government who were attending.

"They pointed out that the state wants to help out with the farm crisis," says Lindholm, "but it is primarily a federal issue. That's because the federal government has the big money and influences many of the factors that affect commodity prices."

Not too long after, in late April, however, the legislature did come through with some farm aid. Chapter 112, as the law was designated, provides $70 million in direct relief, to be split among qualifying farmers. This represents the biggest single-year relief package ever provided to farmers by Minnesota.

Individually, the $70 million cooks down a bit smaller, of course. The payment depends on the type and size of operation, but in no event can amount to more than $5,600 per farm for a crop farmer, with livestock farmers receiving payments based on their property taxes. It's estimated that most producers will receive between $2,000 and $3,000 under the program and that the checks will arrive in June or July. …

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