Senate passes farm bill

The Senate passed its version of the farm bill, S. 3042, by a vote of 86-11, clearing the way for a conference committee to reconcile differences with the House’s version (H.R. 2) of the sweeping agriculture and nutrition legislation.

The Senate bill doesn’t include work rules for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The House version would make work requirements stricter and would shift some food-stamp benefits to job-training programs. This difference is expected to be a point of contention during the conference committee.

The Senate’s bipartisan support of the $867 billion bill comes a week after the House passed its partisan measure by a margin of just two votes.

At this time, the conference committee has not been scheduled. However, the current farm bill expires in Sept. and renewing the legislation is considered a priority.