OSAGE BEACH, MISSOURI (Feb. 15, 2021) - The members of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association (MCA) established 2021 policy priorities at the 53rd Annual Cattle Industry Convention in January. The organization will again pursue reform of the state’s eminent domain laws. The belief of MCA members is eminent domain was intended to be used as a last resort for critical needs and infrastructure that would benefit the general public in the state. MCA President Patty Wood said the law needs additional clarity.
“Eminent domain should not be used by private, for-profit companies to acquire cheap land while providing little to no benefits to Missouri citizens,” said Wood. “A founding principle of this association is private property rights. We will stand for landowners who are fighting for their rights against private companies looking to acquire private land for private gain.”
For the last two years, Rep. Kent Haden (R-43) has led legislation to make clear what entities have inspection authority on farms and ranches. This legislation will be a priority for MCA in the current legislative session. As states continue to pass measures to dictate how other states must produce agricultural products, MCA will back this legislation to prohibit the inspection and enforcement of other state laws on agricultural property in the state of Missouri. The legislation also clarifies which entities or agencies have legal authority to inspect a farming or ranching facility in this state.
MCA will also continue to work and lead national initiatives to increase market transparency and robust price discovery. MCA President-Elect Bruce Mershon said this will be an uphill battle, but one worth fighting. Mershon said MCA will continue to support the Cattle Market Transparency Act, sponsored by Senator Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) and Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.).
“We will not let up on our quest to ensure the cattle markets are fair and provide all segments an opportunity to be profitable. We listened to our members and we will not let elected leaders forget about this issue,” said Mershon. “We cannot wait for another black swan event or market collapse to take action.”