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CLFP and Food Processors Host AB 32 Community Outreach Meeting

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As a follow up to the CLFP Capitol Day in June, Ingomar Packing Company and the Morning Star Packing Company joined with CLFP in hosting a community outreach meeting with local officials to advise them of developments concerning the state’s implementation of AB 32 and the cap-and-trade program, as well as their possible effects on processing companies operating in their communities. The meeting held August 9, hosted by both Ingomar and Morning Star at the Ingomar Packing plant in Gustine, was attended by the mayors of Los Banos and Gustine and a Merced County Supervisor. The mayors also extended invitations to the Merced Farm Bureau and the California Trucking Association.

The general purpose of the meeting was to inform local community leaders of the potential impacts of AB 32, primarily on community revenues and jobs, as the companies begin meeting compliance obligations in 2013 and 2014 and to elicit aid from the community leaders in trying to find better, workable solutions to the costs and problems posed by AB 32 compliance.

Presentations were given on the potential impacts of AB 32 on the respective companies and the options available to meet those obligations including a discussion of the potential costs of pricing and purchasing of allowances and on the upcoming auction.

A general discussion was had regarding the potential effects that the communities could expect as the result of increased costs on business and industry resulting from AB 32 compliance. Both the mayors and the Merced County supervisor expressed concern regarding responses by the companies that might result in layoffs or job losses either directly or through reduced production.

At the end of the presentations, it was proposed to the attending community leaders that they could help in providing information to other communities and towns regarding the impacts of AB 32. The local leaders were asked to reach out to their constituent mayors and other elected leaders in order to alert additional communities to the impacts poised by AB 32 implementation. It was also proposed that CLFP consider similar presentations on AB 32 to city councils and other governing bodies in affected communities.

The mayors suggested that a letter be drafted and circulated among the communities for signatures attesting to the support for the companies operating in the areas and the need to find a workable solution given the negative financial and economic impacts that AB 32 posed for agricultural communities and counties.

Based upon the success of this first meeting, CLFP is available and looks forward to our members developing similar community outreach meetings. If your company would like to have a similiar meeting arranged with your local leaders and elected officials, please contact John Larrea at the CLFP office.


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