Ark. Farm Bureau affirms position on four ballot issues
LITTLE ROCK — Arkansas Farm Bureau’s board of directors, acting in its September meeting, has affirmed positions on four of the five ballot issues that will be in front of Arkansas voters in November.
Citing policy defined by its membership, the board took positions in opposition to ballot proposals that would lead to annual legislative sessions (proposed Constitutional Amendment No. 2), as well as one that would change the state’s constitution and allow establishment of a state-run lottery (proposed Constitutional Amendment No. 3).
The Farm Bureau board came out in support of the ballot initiative (proposed Initiated Act No. 1) that would restrict individuals who are cohabitating outside of a valid marriage from adopting or serving as a foster parent of a child less than 18 years old. The board also came out in favor of allowing issuance of general obligation bonds for Arkansas water, waste disposal and pollution abatement facilities (referred Question No. 1).
“Our policy development process is a classic example of grass roots involvement,” said Stanley Reed, a cotton farmer from Marianna who serves as president of Arkansas Farm Bureau. “Our policy development process begins in the 76 county Farm Bureaus across the state, with their proposals making their way through a state resolutions process and, ultimately, ending up as proposals for consideration at the annual state convention.
“I dare say that the positions our organization takes are debated and discussed more than positions defined by any other organization in the state. When we come out of our policy development process, we have policy that the membership has discussed, understands and feels strongly about.”
Arkansas Farm Bureau’s board did not take a position on proposed Constitutional Amendment No. 1, which would clean up language about voter eligibility, because the organization does not have current policy that covers that issue.
Arkansas Farm Bureau is a nonprofit, private advocacy organization of more than 227,000 families throughout the state working to improve farm and rural life.