Rep. Kenny Hulshof, R-Mo., has introduced a new version of the 2000 Farm and Ranch Risk Management account legislation that would allow growers to defer up to 20 percent of their income in good years to help tide them over in bad ones.

The bill is a companion measure to one introduced in the Senate on Feb. 13 by Sens. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and Max Baucus, D-Mont. Similar bills were introduced in both houses last year, but were not enacted.

Proponents say FARRM accounts would enable farmers to better manage their income flow by allowing them to defer federal income tax on up to 20 percent of their income per year for five years. The measure is designed to allow producers to set aside a portion of annual income in good years, to help tide them over in the inevitable bad year.

USA Rice Federation leaders applauded the legislation, noting that FARRM accounts and other tax reform measures would benefit producers and shore up declining incomes.

“Establishing FARRM accounts is a positive first step, but other tax reforms are needed and soon, to help combat the chronic low prices and rising input costs that farmers are facing,” said Gary Sebree, chairman of the U.S. Rice Producers Group.

“USA Rice supports the repeal of the estate or death tax, which is important for estate management planning,” said Sebree, a rice producer from Stuttgart, Ark.