The Wisconsin Soybean Association (WSA) finalized its 2023 priorities at its annual meeting Feb. 2 at the Wisconsin Corn•Soy Expo at the Kalahari Resort in Wisconsin Dells. WSA set priority goals, including the push for tax incentives for biodiesel blends, transportation and infrastructure improvements, protecting farm inputs and growing exports through the Port of Milwaukee. Following the meeting, Wautoma farmer Sara Stelter was elected president. WSA’s officer team now includes Stelter, Vice President Doug Rebout, Secretary Daniel Linse and Treasurer Matt Rehberg, who was elected to another term as District 1 director.
WSA directors and staff head to Washington, D.C., Feb. 28-March 2 for American Soybean Association board meetings and biannual Hill Visits with federal legislators. Policies surrounding the Farm Bill and federal legislation will be forwarded to ASA and will be voted on at Commodity Classic March 10-12 in Orlando, Fla. Wisconsin now supports two ASA directors: Tanner Johnson joins longtime ASA Director Don Lutz.
The Wisconsin State legislative session is underway in Madison. WSA and our lobbyist, Jordan Lamb of The Welch Group, have hit the ground running on behalf of WSA members.
The 2022 election left Wisconsin with a divided government. Democratic Gov. Tony Evers, elected to his second 4-year term, oversees a Republican-led Assembly (64-35) and Senate (21-11). Currently, there is one vacant Senate seat.
The beginning of this session has been focused on the biennial budget, which will be signed in July 2023. Recently, the Ag Coalition, which comprises WSA and other Wisconsin agriculture groups, released their shared policy priorities for the 2023-2025 biennial budget. The coalition’s priorities cover farmer-led conservation programs, rural economic development initiatives, nonpoint source pollution programs and renewable energy programs.
WSA advocates will be working hard in Madison throughout the year ahead to advance our legislative priorities and improve the economic outlook for Wisconsin’s nearly 15,000 soybean farmers.