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Senate reaches agreement on farm bill amendment, setting stage for final vote
WASHINGTON (AP) ' The Senate has broken a deadlock on a half-trillion dollar farm and food bill, setting the stage for a final vote on the measure this week.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced a list of some 70 amendments out of about 300 offered to the 1,000-page bill that would set farm policy over the next five years and provide nearly $80 billion a year for the federal food stamp program.
The two parties have negotiated for days on which amendments would be allowed.
The Senate bill would bring major changes to the federal safety net for farmers by eliminating direct payments to farmers, even when they don't plant crops, replacing that with greater stress on crop insurance. The House has yet to come up with a companion bill.