REGINA - NDP Leader Ryan Meili and Agriculture Critic Trent Wotherspoon joined producers on a family farm outside of Regina n to call on the Sask. Party government to stop stalling and sign on to the full AgriStability fix proposed by the federal government before the June 30 deadline for farmers and producers to enroll for the program.
“The federal government’s proposal has been on the table for months, but so far the Sask. Party government has been asleep at the wheel,” said Meili. “I was proud to stand with Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley and Manitoba NDP Leader Wab Kinew to make a joint call on the prairie conservative governments to back this much-needed fix in April. It’s shameful that this government has refused to lead on behalf of our farmers and producers.”
A partial agreement with the federal government was reached in March to remove the reference margin limit, but the Sask. Party government has steadfastly refused to invest the money necessary to change the compensation rate from 70 to 80 per cent.
“We had a $1 billion rainfall that has temporarily saved producers in much of Saskatchewan from severe drought conditions, but every producer knows that you’re only one disaster away from a failed crop year,” said Wotherspoon. “Producers have until June 30 to enroll in AgriStability and are united in calling for this needed change. Instead of blocking this fix as the Sask. Party have been, producers deserve their government to stand up for them.”
Cam Goff operates a family farm growing cereals, oilseeds, and pulse crops near Hanley with his two brothers. He has participated in AgriStability and AgriInvest since their inception. “AgriStability is a vital life-line for farmers and producers,” said Goff. “Since the Harper Conservatives cut the program in 2013 I and others have faced increased risk and increased costs. The Sask. Party government needs to step up to the plate and get this job done for farmers and producers.”
Producer groups like Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan have consistently called on the provincial government to sign on to the full fix to AgriStability.