Welcome to the new Fiscal year! There are a couple of things I wanted to pass on to you with this update. The Association President's had a recent teleconference with our new Administrator Val Dolcini last Friday. He asked that we provide him with a overview of each of our associations and provide him with our main issue. We greatly appreciate his willingness to listen to our concerns and I tried to relay what I have heard from you about our need for additional staff and specifically additional loan officers. He was very complimentary to the work that we do and appreciated all of our efforts. They did not provide us any details at the moment on when we could expect the additional loan officers that were proposed in the 2015 budget as we are still on a continuing resolution.
I also wanted to pass on the following letter from Ben Herink:
Dear NACS Member,
On September 15-16, 2014, John Gehrke and I traveled to Washington D.C. for several important legislative activities. With the implementation of the Farm Bill underway, the Legislative Committee and McAllister & Quinn have begun shifting its priorities for the next 12-24 months. With the proposed loan appropriations levels for Fiscal Year 2015, things look very positive for Farm Loan Programs on Capitol Hill. We continue to have a great story to tell. One thing we are focusing on this next year is building a solid foundation of partners in the ag credit community. The first day in Washington was spent meeting with a few of our most important partners.
Individual meetings were held with:
* American Bankers Association (ABA)
* Sustainable Ag Coalition
* Independent Community Bankers Association (ICBA)
* Jim Radintz, Assistant Deputy Administrator for Farm Loan Programs
Note: We were scheduled to meet with Chris Beyerhelm as well, but he was under the weather and was not able to make it in to the office that day.
On Tuesday, John and I met with representatives of 7 different offices of House and Senate Agricultural Committee members. Among these were meetings with the lead majority and minority committee staff of the House Committee on Agriculture.
With all groups and offices we discussed the possibility of raising our direct loan limits and the potential impacts this might have for both our loan programs and those of our credit partners. Knowing that this may be 12-24 month task, we made it a point to take the temperature of each partner in relation to this issue. Additionally, further discussions were had on direct loan term limits and the Department's report due to Congress next summer on this issue. We also discussed common goals and ways we can partner in the future to have a stronger voice in Washington with our ag credit partners and the Department.
As always we continue to promote the strong efforts, hard work, and success of NACS and Farm Loan Programs. We look forward to educating the new members of Congress following the mid-term elections this fall.
I do have one bit of sad new to relay. Eden Forsythe, whom many of you have met, has decided to leave McAllister & Quinn and join Congressman Levin's staff. We wish Eden best of luck in her endeavors back in Government. Her last day at M&Q was September 12th.
Legislative Committee Chairman
LeAnn is a Farm Loan Chief from New Mexico. She was elected NACS President at the June 2019 Convention.