SDFU to Host Informational Meeting Chamberlain on Grain Buyer Laws

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South Dakota Farmers Union will host an informational meeting on grain buying and warehousing on Wednesday, July 17, at Chamberlain. The meeting will begin at 1:00 pm at the Chamberlain AmericInn, 1981 East King Street, and is open to the public.

South Dakota Public Utilities vice chairman Chris Nelson along with representatives from both South Dakota and Iowa’s grain buyer and grain warehouse regulatory staff will attend and give presentations on the laws and rules regarding grain buying and grain warehousing in South Dakota and Iowa and how the states’ regulations differ and where there is commonality.

Commissioner Nelson plans to discuss recent legislation regarding grain buyer and warehouse legislation that passed the 2013 South Dakota Legislature. Jim Mehlhaff, the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission's warehouse division director, will give a presentation about South Dakota's licensing and inspection program. The laws were changed this year in response to the insolvency of Minnesota-based Anderson Seed Company's facility in Redfield in February of 2012 where producers lost an estimated $2.6 million.

Richard Wahl, grain bureau chief for the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, will discuss his state’s rules and regulations pertaining to grain buying and warehousing. Wahl will also speak about the state’s financial review procedures and its indemnity fund which was created to provide partial protection against grain buyers and warehouses which may become insolvent.  

“We're extremely honored to have Commissioner Nelson, Mr. Mehlhaff and Mr. Wahl join us for this very important meeting, and we very much appreciate them taking time out of their busy schedules to come speak with us,," said South Dakota Farmers Union Legislative Director Mike Traxinger. “We’ve already had one informational meeting on grain buying and warehousing laws, and it was a very productive meeting where many producers contributed to the discussion about this pertinent issue. We’ll have a chance to see how Iowa’s laws are the similar and how they differ from South Dakota’s. This meeting will shows us what we do best and what we need to work on before the next legislative session.”

South Dakota Farmers Union will also give a brief presentation on its efforts in the last legislative session regarding grain buyers and warehouses and the family farm organization's perspective on the next steps needed to further protect producers. Following the presentations there will be time for a question and answer period for producers to learn more about laws in both states.

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