Dusty Johnson’s Weekly Column: Getting It Done

Getting It Done
By Rep. Dusty Johnson
December 10, 2021

There’s a classic narrative that nothing gets accomplished in Washington. I’ll admit there’s a lot of disfunction in government, but this week that wasn’t the case.

The end of the year is a busy time for most folks– from college finals to end of year budgets, project deadlines and Christmas shopping – it’s crunch time. It’s similar in Congress. After months of work and collaboration, two of my bills passed the U.S. House this week.

The Ocean Shipping Reform Act (OSRA) that I led with Representative John Garamendi to hold foreign ocean shippers accountable passed the House 364-60. This bipartisan bill is the biggest overhaul of federal maritime policy in 30 years to address the ongoing supply chain crisis and will safeguard South Dakota agriculture exporters from unfair trade practices like we are seeing at U.S. ports today.

South Dakota businesses from Strider Bikes in Rapid City to Valley Queen Cheese in Milbank are experiencing port delays, equipment access issues, and declined bookings. These delays have a negative impact on our local economy. More than 2 million pounds of South Dakota lactose that’s been sold and is ready to ship is sitting in Valley Queen’s warehouse waiting for an empty container to become available. On top of that, the National Milk Producers Federation estimates that export supply chain challenges cost the U.S. dairy sector nearly $1 billion in only six months.

My bill provides a solution to these problems, and I am confident it will get quick consideration in the Senate.

The Cattle Contract Library Act also passed the House on Wednesday. Currently, cattlemen are unaware of contract terms being offered by packers, leading to a decline in leverage for smaller producers during price negotiations.

Since I came to Congress, producers have made it clear they want transparency. The Cattle Contract Library provides just that and increases competition in an industry that desperately needs it. While no single piece of legislation can solve all problems, it can certainly help. Getting this bill across the finish line was a team effort, and I’m grateful to all of the producers that helped get this done.

I’m a policy guy, so I was encouraged to see a number of victories and real policies pass the House this week. Some might call it a Christmas miracle.

The work is not done though, but I will keep working to get both pieces of my legislation across the finish line in the Senate.


One thought on “Dusty Johnson’s Weekly Column: Getting It Done”

  1. What a contrast to our Senators message! Great work, Dusty I wish we had more legislators like you that work! No excuses or finger pointing, only results!

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