The House Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy and Research held a hearing last month (27 March 2007) to examine the financing structure of renewable energy sources.

“Farmers and ranchers now have access to credit from several sectors, and we must ensure that the future credit needs of rural America will still be met in a changing agricultural landscape,” said subcommittee chairman Tim Holden (D-Pennsylvania).  “Today, we heard the views of government representatives, lenders, and borrowers, and their information and ideas about the availability of credit in farm country will be helpful to us as we prepare to write the Farm Bill this year.”

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The subcommittee heard testimony from two panels of witnesses. The first panel included USDA Farm Service Agency and Farm Credit Administration representatives.  The second panel was comprised of representatives from banking associations, cooperatives and rural coalitions that assist beginning farmers.

“Both the Farm Credit System and commercial banks have done an outstanding job servicing their communities' credit needs,” said Ranking Member Frank Lucas (R-Oklahoma). “It is Congress' job to ensure that credit needs are met in a manner that provides fair and equitable competition. We must enable rural America to keep pace with the rest of the world.”