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Story Archives: Senate considers contract bill for ag quotes
|Senate considers contract bill for ag quotes|
Whenever local farmer Buckshot Sims received a price quote from local grain elevators, Sims said both he and the operator understood it as a contract to sell grain.
Under a law proposed by state Rep. Andy Anders, D-Clayton, the state of Louisiana would give such oral agreements between producers and elevator operators the force of law.
If passed, House Bill 801 would make such oral agreements binding contracts enforceable in court.
Local elevator operator Ryan Ellington said that's the way "business is done" in the agriculture industry and said he had no problem seeing the bill become law.
"All they are doing is putting the law in place," Ellington said. "It's already the norm of the business."
State Sen. Francis Thompson said he expected the bill to pass the state Senate without much opposition.
"It's an important bill because, with prices fluctuating, we don't want anything that would have a negative impact on farmers retaining their price they were quoted," said Thompson, who serves as chairman of the Senate agriculture committee. "It also protects grain elevators because it ensures when they quote a price, it's a completed deal."
HB-801 requires grain elevators to stand by their prices and provide written confirmation of such price quotes within two business days. Also, the bill removes the 10-day period a producer has to reject the terms of the contract.
Ellington said market fluctuations make HB-801 an important law.
"There is a lot of futures money being sent to Chicago because of the way these futures markets are fluctuating," Ellington said.
Ellington added he did not expect the law to change the way Franklin Parish producers do business with elevators.
"We've got honest folks around here and honest people are going to do what's right," he said.