Farm Operations

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    July 29th, 2015


    Farm Financial Standard Annual Conference

    Today begins the annual Farm Financial Standards Council annual conference in warm Kennewick, Washington (we are supposed to be 104 on Friday).  The Council primary goals are to provide guidance to agriculture producers on preparing accrual based financial statements.  The meeting gets started today with committee meetings.  Tomorrow’s schedule has speakers on succession planning and […]

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    July 20th, 2015


    WA State Piece Rate Workers Must Be Compensated for Breaks

    The WA Supreme Court decided on July 16, 2015 in Demetrio v. Sakuma Bros. Farms, Inc. that employers must pay piece rate workers for rest periods “separate and apart from the piece rate.”  Farm workers paid by the task are entitled to rest-break pay above the negotiated piece rate.  This ruling is the result of a […]

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    July 13th, 2015


    Not Filing a Information Return is Getting More Expense

    Late last month Congress passed the Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015 to continue the fast track of trade negotiations (TPA, etc.).  However, to pay for part of the Act’s provisions, the Act increased the penalties for not filing information returns (Form 1099) and the increase can be substantial in the case of multiple non-filed […]

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    July 10th, 2015


    Updated PLC Yields Much Higher Than Old Yields

    One of the options available to landowners under the 2014 Farm Bill was to update their yield to 90% of the average yield from 2008 to 2012.  A producer could retain the old CCP yield which in many cases had not been updated since the 1980s or update to the new yield.  Producers who elected […]

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    July 9th, 2015


    Senate Finance Committee Releases Tax Reform Reports

    The Senate Finance Committee just released four reports on possible tax reforms yesterday.  The reports were on the following aspects of tax reform: The Business Income Report The Community Development and Infrastructure Report The Individual Tax Report The Savings and Investment Report In today’s post, I will recap some of my findings from the first […]

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    July 7th, 2015


    It’s Official – No PLC Payments for Wheat, Barley and Oats!

    Wheat, Barley and Oats have a marketing year that ends May 31.  The USDA released the final 2014/15 MYA prices for each crop as follows: Wheat – $5.99 Barley – $5.30 Oats    – $3.20 In all cases, the MYA price for each crop exceeded the reference price called for in the 2014 Farm Bill.  These references […]

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    July 6th, 2015


    How Liquid Are Our Farmers?

      I was browsing the latest publication from the Kansas City Federal Reserve on the Farm Economy.  Nathan Kauffman released a report on June 25, 2015 titled “Today’s Corn Prices, Yields Look Like 2009″.  Although the gist of the article detailed how corn prices and yields for 2015 look very similar to 2009 (at least […]

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    June 29th, 2015


    Largest Decrease in Cash Rents Since 1987

    I was reading the latest Ag Letter from the Chicago Federal Reserve and noticed an interesting tidbit on cash rents. The first part of the letter addressed farmland values being relatively flat to slightly negative for the first quarter of 2015. A chart on page 2 showed the annual percentage change in cash rents for […]

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    June 26th, 2015


    Extreme Drought Hits Washington State – USDA Provides Some Relief

    Ranchers in Eastern Washington may be eligible for financial drought relief from USDA after the US Drought Monitor reached D2, or extreme drought, for eight consecutive weeks.  I know that this weekend is supposed to hit 111 or higher on both Saturday and Sunday and almost all of next week is expected around 105 or […]

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    June 25th, 2015


    June 30 Extension for Medical Insurance Penalties Rapidly Approaches

    Small employers received some relief this year when steep penalties for employer payment plans were extended to June 30, 2015.  These $100 per day per employee penalties apply when employers pay for or reimburse an employee’s individual health insurance premiums rather than provide employer sponsored group insurance.  All employers were originally expected to comply by […]

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