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Mr. MCMILLAN. That is it; that is the main complaint from my district.
Mr. WATTS. I could visualize that if we approved your bill we might have a number of bills, each trying to deal with one county. Since there are only 38 counties caught in the squeeze, it would seem better to have 1 bill that covered all 38 counties. It seems to me that would be a more satisfactory way of doing it than trying to do it by one county at the time.
Mr. FORD. I would agree to that.
Mr. MCMILLAN. I think all of the counties should be treated the
Mr. WATTS. I do not know how they feel about it.
Mr. POLLOCK. I doubt if the Grain Division here represented could speak on that, because this involves the Soil Bank Section of the Department.
Mr. WATTS. That is right.
Mr. POLLOCK. I would not like to speak for them.
Mr. WATTS. But I believe you would agree with me, if we undertook to do anything about it, it would be better to solve the whole problem than to pick out one county?
Mr. POLLOCK. I am sure that is right.
Mr. MCMILLAN. I would think so.
Mr. POLLOCK. I think in all 38 counties it would be possible to find cases of this kind.
Mr. JOHNSON. What States are these counties that are involved in? Mr. LEMAY. They are listed on this map down here.
Mr. MCMILLIAN. My complaints are exactly the ones cited by Mr. Ford.
Mr. WALKER. Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Missouri, South Carolina, and Virginia. These are listed on this map. It only affects the soil bank. It won't affect the support price.
Mr. WATTS. Do we have a lot of people putting tobacco into the soil bank?
Mr. MCMILLAN. It is cotton.
Mr. JOHNSON. They have to comply on corn in order to place cotton in the soil bank.
Mr. FORD. I understand there was just one other county in Michigan that came in this commercial corn area, that is Bay County, and we have checked with the Congressman from that area and, apparently, as best he knows there has not been any problem there. They may be in a growing area or weather conditions are such which would permit them to plant something else or get them out of this problem. But in our area they are just in a bind and they have no alternative.
Mr. MCMILLAN. In the 20 years I have been a Member of Congress I have never had anything happen to my district to cause so much confusion as this one order. Not even reducing tobacco 50 percent caused as much trouble and confusion.
Mr. WATTS. It is very easy to understand when the farmer has no way of knowing that his county is in the commercial corn area. Mr. WALKER. I think that is true.
Mr. WATTS. I think the Department should give some consideration to putting in that about cross compliance where it was impossible for a farmer to know and got in a mess through no fault of his own.
Mr. MCMILLAN. And, also, advise the Members of the Congress who represent those districts. They should do that. I could hardly explain this situation. I didn't know who recommended the county going into the commercial corn area. And I could not find anyone who did know. The ASC committee was complaining, the Grange, and the Farm Bureau and all of them were on my neck. In fact, they were accusing me of designating Dillon County as a commercial county. I could not tell them how they even got under it.
Mr. WALKER. I believe you can see now that the Secretary had no alternative but to place those two counties in the commercial corn area under the law.
Mr. WATTS. That is right, under the law.
Mr. JONES. That is what I was going to bring out; in other words, the only way we could cure this would be by legislation. There is no administrative authority in the law permitting him to do that. Mr. WALKER. That is right.
Mr. JONES. May I suggest, Mr. Chairman, that we inquire of the Department if they would have any objection to legislation such as has been suggested by Mr. Watts here, that where counties were placed in this commercial corn area, in other words, that it would be a year before they would come under the cross compliance. I think that would probably take care of it.
Mr. WALKER. With respect to corn?
Mr. JONES. With respect to corn, yes. I mean to be equitable. In other words, I think we have legislation pending, suggesting that we do away with the commercial corn areas entirely. And that has been one of the proposals that has been made to their committee. And I have always felt that there was not too much justification for having these commercial corn areas.
You take in the district that I represent, southeast Missouri, while we are a dominant cotton area, still 8 of the 11 counties that I have are commercial corn counties, too.
Mr. WALKER. You have some mighty good land down there.
Mr. JONES. We can raise anything down there, that is true. If people go out of one, they go into the other.
Mr. WALKER. I am well acquainted with that area.
Mr. JONES. I think it is an imposition when, as Mr. Ford pointed out, the rules are changed in the middle of the game. No one anticipated that that would happen, and I think that the committee should give consideration to it. I think it would be well for the chairman to take this up with the Department and see if they would have any objection to the suggestion made by Mr. Watts. I think we can get that relief in a fairly short time.
Mr. MCMILLAN. In this last paragraph that I have from the chairman of the ASC committee in Horry County he says the farmers in this area are caught in a squeeze.
Mr. JOHNSON. They have to sign up for the cotton pretty quick. Mr. MCMILLAN. They have up until March 7.
Mr. JOHNSON. No; February 20. That has been moved back to February 20, and you are going to have to get this legislation through real early to give those people help, so that they will know where they
Mr. FORD. I think time is of the essence. Certainly, it is a very disturbing situation to these people not knowing which way they can or should go.
Mr. JONES. Do you not think, Mr. Chairman, that if Mr. Pollock and Mr. Walker would make inquiry down at the Department that we could, at least, get the Department's position on this. We ought to be able to get that today. I do not see any season why we couldn't get it today by you gentlemen inquiring, by taking it up with the soil bank people, also, with Mr. McLain or someone down there in the administration section.
Mr. FORD. I can tell you, Mr. Jones, Mr. McLain is well acquainted with my problem.
Mr. JONES. I think we ought to be able to get that today, do you not, Mr. Chairman?
Mr. MCMILLAN. I would think so.
Mr. JONES. I think you understand what the problem is. From what I have gathered from the statements of the representatives of the Department, while they state they do not have any authority to make any recommendations with regard to changing it, of course, I think that they are acquainted with what the problem is and, certainly, can present it to the other people in the Department. Would you be willing to do that?
Mr. POLLOCK. Yes, sir.
Mr. JONES. I think that would solve it.
Mr. WALKER. I doubt seriously if we could get you a reply to that this afternoon.
Mr. JONES. I know it is pretty hard to get it fast. Still in an emergency I think there would be every reason why they should do it. I think if the chairman called down there and we get them moving, we can get it. If we know what their decision is we can know what action to take ourselves.
Mr. MCMILLAN. What you would suggest then is to postpone the effective date until they give them a year's notice?
Mr. JONES. That is the thing that apparently seems to be desired, that is one way to do it. That might be the most expedient and might be the best way.
Mr. MCMILLAN. It has come on so suddenly that they did not have an opportunity to do anything. That was the general complaint. I know I was not advised of this order.
I had a hard time getting an explanation from you folks in the Department. I wrote four letters and it took me a month to get an answer to each one of them.
Mr. JONES. They are busy down there.
(The letters referred to are as follows:)
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE,
Dillon, S. C., January 31, 1958.
DEAR MR. MCMILLAN: I wish to thank you for your letter of January 25 in reference to information about corn in Dillon County. I have gathered the best
information I can, including that furnished by the county agent and corn dealers, which is as follows:
Number of bushels of corn grown in Dillon County-.
(There are 2,100 brood sows in county, and estimating that each 4 brood sows would equal 1 hog farm, there would be approximately 525 hog farms that produce about 25,200 hogs to grow out.)
We do not feel like the AMS corn reports are correct, for we know that Dillon County has 110,434 acres of cropland, and on this we have our alloted crops and all the other crops, which in some cases are estimated.
With the above crops and idle land totaling 66,048 acres, and a total of 110,434 acres of cropland, we still have 44,386 acres of land to account for, and it is our belief that the most of this land was planted to corn. Our farmers reported approximately 42,000 acres of corn in recent survey, and we are inclined to believe this is about right. The AMS corn figures first allowed us was 26,000 acres, however we were able to get this adjusted to 32,522 acres for historical purposes. However, we understand that this AMS figure of 26,000 acres caused our country corn factor to be about 20 percent lower than it would have seen if we had used the 32,522 acres as our historical acreage, which we still believe is too low.
We are enclosing two data sheets called the 1958 corn allotment program sheet 58-C-3 and sheet 58-C-3A which shows the AMS figures I mentioned above.
Also, we would like to call your attention to silage corn mentioned on the enclosed sheets. It states corn production excluding silage corn. In our corn survey made in Dillon County, silage corn was considered, and we feel like our dairy farmers should be allowed to plant their corn for silage since no grain is harvested.
If I can be of any further assistance, please call on me.
J. C. HARTLEY, Chairman, ASC Committee.
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, Washington, D. C., December 11, 1957.
Hon. JOHN L. MCMILLAN,
Member of Congress,
Florence, S. C.
DEAR CONGRESSMAN MCMILLAN: Thank you for your letter of November 22, 1957, relative to the inclusion of Dillon and Horry Counties, S. C., in the 1958 commercial corn-producing area.
Under the provisions of section 301 (b) (4) of the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938, as amended, all counties in the United States in which the 10-year average production of corn, excluding corn used as silage, as adjusted for abnormal weather conditions, is 450 bushels or more per farm and 4 bushels or more per acre of farmland are included in the commercial corn-producing area for the next year. Any county which is adjacent to a county meeting the 10-year average test mentioned above was examined to determine if a township, or a minor civil division, in the county was producing and is likely to produce the
required amounts of corn according to law for inclusion in the commercial corn-producing area.
Since Dillon and Horry Counties are both adjacent to Robeson County, N. C., which met the requirements of a law for inclusion in the 1958 commercial cornproducing area on a county basis, it was necessary to determine the production of corn in the various townships in both Dillon and Horry Counties to determine if the production of corn, less silage, in one or more of the townships in each county was sufficient to meet the requirements of law of 450 bushels or more per farm and 4 bushels or more per acre of farmland in the township.
Upon investigation we find that Carmichael Township, in Dillon County, one of the highest corn-producing townships in the county, produced an average of 566 bushels per farm and 4.4 bushels per acre of farmland in 1956, and in 1957 the average production was 595 bushels per farm and 4.7 bushels per acre of farmland. The act further requires the Secretary to determine if the township is likely to produce the required amounts of corn in 1958. On the basis of the normal yield and recent acreage planted to corn, it was determined that the township was likely to produce the required amounts of corn in 1958. These determinations required the inclusion of Dillon County in the commercial cornproducing area for the 1958 crop year.
In Horry County we find that Bayboro Township, one of the highest cornproducing townships in the county, produced an average of 583 bushels per farm and 8.9 bushels per acre of farmland in 1956. In 1957 the average production was 540 bushels per farm and 8.2 bushels per acre of farmland. Thus, the township is producing the required amounts of corn in accordance with the provisions of law. The normal yield and recent acreage planted to corn also indicate that this township is likely to produce the required amounts of corn in 1958, thus also requiring the inclusion of Horry County in the 1958 commercial corn-producing
Since the production of corn in portions of Dillon and Horry Counties has reached such a high level that the counties must be included in the 1958 commercial corn-producing area as defined in the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938, as amended, it should be noted that this increased production is not the result of an increase in the acreage planted to corn, but the result of an increase in the yield of corn per acre of land planted to the crop. These increased yields are due principally to more intensive methods of cultivation, greater use of fertilizer, and the increased use of hybrid seed corn.
We hope this information will be of assistance to you, and want you to feel free to write to us at any time.
Hon. JOHN L. MCMILLAN,
House of Representatives.
MARVIN L. MCLAIN,
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, Washington, D. C., February 5, 1958.
DEAR CONGRESSMAN MCMILLAN: Thank you for your letter of January 14, 1958, to which was attached a letter from Mr. D. M. Dew, Jr., president, D. M. Dew & Sons, Inc., Latta, S. C., relative to the inclusion of Dillon County, S. C., in the 1958 commercial corn-producing area.
The provisions of section 301 (b) (4) of the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938, as amended, provide that any county which borders upon a county which is included in the commercial corn-producing area on the basis of the 10-year average production of corn shall be examined to determine if any minor civil division in such county is producing an average of at least 450 bushels of corn per farm and an average of at least 4 bushels for each acre of farmland within the minor civil division. If it is found that any such county has a single township which is producing such amounts of corn and it is found that such township will likely produce such amounts of corn, the whole county must be included in the commercial corn-producing area.
Since Dillon County is adjacent to Robeson County, N. C., which met the requirements of law for inclusion in the 1958 commercial corn-producing area on a 10-year average production basis, it was necessary to examine the various townships in Dillon County to determine if the production of corn in 1 or more of the townships was equal to 450 bushels or more per farm and 4 bushels or more per acre of farmland within the township.