Corn Congress Re-elects Iowans to National Board

Iowa corn growers joined others from around the country last week for annual NCGA Corn Congress in Washington, D.C.

Delegates from across the U.S. re-elected two Iowans to national leadership positions on the National Corn Growers Association's national corn board. It happened during NCGA's Corn Congress last week in Washington, D.C.

Daryl Haack, former chairman of the Iowa Corn Promotion Board who farms near Primghar, and Dave Nelson, a past Iowa Corn Growers Association president from Belmond, were both elected to second terms on NCGA's governing board.

Nelson and Haack both have extensive backgrounds promoting ethanol production and use as state corn grower leaders and founding members of Iowa ethanol plants in their area of the state. In addition, Haack works on biotechnology and infrastructure issues for NCGA and Nelson represents the NCGA with the National Pork Producers Council and is the Iowa corn board's liaison to the NCGA's Production and Stewardship Action Team.

Corn delegates met with Congressmen

Ron Litterer, the third Iowan on NCGA's 15-person board, will progress from his current position as NCGA president to NCGA chairman in November.

In addition to holding elections while in Washington last week, Iowa delegates to the Corn Congress met with Iowa Sens. Chuck Grassley and Tom Harkin, Iowa Congressmen Tom Latham and Dave Loebsack, and senior staff members for representatives Leonard Boswell, Bruce Braley and Steve King.

Iowa has the largest representation at the Corn Congress of any state, and Iowa growers serve on every NCGA action team and committee. The ICGA is a membership organization working for policy decisions that create opportunities for long-term Iowa corn grower profitability.

Key messages covered with members

According to Mindy Larsen Poldberg, director of government relations for ICGA and ICPB, the Iowa corn grower delegates delivered the following messages when they met with Congressional members and staff in Washington.

* Thank you for supporting passage of the 2008 Farm Bill that included the new Average Crop Revenue Election program. Please work to keep this program intact during the annual appropriations process.
* Please remain strong in your support for the Renewable Fuels Standard in the face of a national food and fuel debate; and please maintain the 45 cent blenders credit and the tariff on imports of ethanol into the U.S.
* Thank you for supporting passage of the 2007 Water Resources Development Act. Annual appropriations are now needed to ensure that authorized lock and dam modernization work on the Mississippi River is completed.
* Support continued funding for the National Plant Genome Initiative with focused research on economically significant plants like corn and soybeans.
* Move soon to approve the Colombia Free Trade Agreement.
* Oppose the Clean Water Restoration Act (HR 2421, S. 1870) that gives the EPA undue jurisdiction.

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