From an email from Judith McGeary, Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance,
End-of-the-Year Update on NAIS
The Senate Passes The Farm Bill
The Senate finally voted on its version of the Farm Bill. The NAIS provision was amended, but not in a good way. The big "manager's amendment," which rolled together a lot of unrelated amendments, included a provision that replaced the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) exemption in Section 10305 with a new provision. The new version directs the USDA to issue regulations consistent with FOIA for information collected under NAIS. Like the earlier version of Section 10305, this provision would be the first direct statutory reference to NAIS, and thus implies Congressional approval of what USDA is doing. Whether one thinks farmers' information should be open under FOIA or not, the most important point is that no such database should be created in the first place! In January, the Senate and House will create a conference committee to merge their two versions of the Farm Bill. As soon as we know all the members of the conference committee, we will update you on who to contact.
The Nation Publishes Anti-NAIS Article!
A strong anti-NAIS article was published online in The Nation. If a lot of people go to the site to read the article, the public response will encourage The Nation to publish more articles on NAIS.
You can find the article, "USDA Bets the Farm on NAIS," at http://www.thenation.com/doc/20071231/pentland_gumpert Go to the link and send all your friends this alert so they can read the article online too! Help us get more press coverage of NAIS!