Senator Ken Schilz of Ogallala, chairman of the Nebraska Unicameral’s Agriculture Committee, says the committee’s main focus in 2014 is on expansion of the livestock industry within the state.
“There are many opportunities and we need to be ready to take advantage when they come around,” Shilz writes in his legislative blog. “I am introducing a study to look at dairy and the associated industries that could locate here in Nebraska. This study will look to all of the stakeholders to gather information to look at the barriers to expansion of dairy here in the state. We will look at processing, as well, and how we can work to co-locate these businesses with the milk production needed.”
Schilz is also proposing legislation that would end the state’s prohibition on packer ownership of hogs, making it easier for farmers to enter into custom feeding arrangement for hogs. Another bill would assist counties that have been identified as “Livestock Friendly” in identifying the prime locations in their counties for livestock expansion.
Schilz is also a member of the Unicameral’s Natural Resources Committee, which is working on water sustainability. And he is involved in efforts to reduce property taxes for farmers and ranchers.
Brownfield visited recently with Schilz about the issues of livestock expansion, water sustainability and taxes.
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