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Conquering the Farm Bill Currently, Lucas serves on three committees in the U.S. House of Representatives: the House Committee on Financial Services, the House Committee on Science and Technology, and the House Committee on Agriculture where he is proud to serve as chairman. Previously, Lucas served as a conferee during the drafting of the 2002 and 2008 farm bills. These experiences set the stage for his outstand- ing work as chairman of the House Committee on Agriculture.


His efforts have culminated in the recent over- whelming approval of the Agricultural Act of 2014—also known as the Farm Bill, a triumph for the American farmer made possible through the persistent, unwavering dedication and diligent work of the congressman. The Agricultural Act of 2014—a five-year com- prehensive bill—ensures producers have the tools they need to provide an affordable and stable food and fiber supply. “The last Farm Bill fight is a shining example of Lucas’ work. He never loses focus of the goal set before him,” Davis said. “As chairman, he is not only representing Oklahoma, but also many farmers and food producers throughout the


nation. He’s attentive to the needs of people from every region.” The approval of the Farm Bill did not come easily for Lucas. The bill was his No. 1 priority for the last two-and-a-half years. Having President Obama sign it on February 7, 2014, was indeed a victory that has made a lasting impression on the congressman. “This process made me a better person,” Lucas


said, his eyes shining with a deep sense of fulfill- ment. “We did it the right way. This bill, subject to what Mother Nature does, will stand the test of time. If you ask the groups affected, the com- modity folks and the conservation folks, you will find both groups are pleased.” Throughout the last two years, Lucas faced


staunch opposition and resistance while drafting the Farm Bill.


“I made a point to tell my colleagues it was not about how much money anybody has in their pockets. If there’s not enough food on the store shelves, money doesn’t matter,” he said. “We have good farmers and ranchers out there, work- ing hard every day so we have enough food to eat. What we need is good farm policy to give them the tools they need to thrive.” Lucas believes a farmer’s greatest challenges are


the weather and the market—two factors that can- not be controlled. However, Lucas strives to pro- vide the infrastructure needed such as electricity, adequate water supply and telecommunications technology to empower agribusinesses through- out the nation. When asked about the highlight of his career, he answered: “It was seeing the Farm Bill pass the Senate and


the House. It doesn’t get much better than that. But every time I go to the floor to vote on behalf of my constituents, that’s when I am amazingly satisfied,” Lucas said.


Lucas and his staff will spend the rest of 2014 making sure the Farm Bill is suitably implement- ed. When he goes home to Cheyenne, golf is not the game for Lucas; instead, he works on fences, spends time with his family, and cares for his wheat crop as well as his cow-calf operation. It’s not uncommon to find Lucas walking the fields of his farm, as far as no signal can be reached for a cell phone connection. It’s in such moments he reflects on his purpose and calling—and, it is right there in the farm fields, where he was raised, that his heart is happiest.


NRECA bestows Distinguished Service Award on Rep. Frank Lucas F


or his untiring efforts and pas- sion for rural America, the National Rural Electric


Cooperative Association has recently bestowed Rep. Lucas with the associa- tion’s Distinguished Service Award, an honor designated to public officials who have gone above and beyond in furthering the principles and prog- ress of electric cooperatives. “Frank Lucas has long been a major supporter of the electric cooperative business model, not only in Oklahoma, but across the nation,” NRECA CEO Jo Ann Emerson said. “Frank under- stands the job of electrifying rural


22 WWW.OK-LIVING.COOP


and suburban America is not finished simply because most people have electricity; continu- ing support of infrastructure is critical for elec- tric cooperatives and for the communities they serve.” Lucas has championed the Rural Utilities


WATCH!


Click the image above or scan the code below to watch Rep. Frank Lucas’ comments on receiving the award.


Service electric loan program and worked tire- lessly to ensure electric co-ops can continue to provide safe, reliable and affordable power to 42 million Americans. The National Rural Electric Cooperative


Association is the national service organiza- tion that represents the nation’s more than 900 private, not-for-profit, consumer-owned electric cooperatives, which provide service to 42 million people in 47 states.


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