Water, Jumping Mouse, Ag Exemptions for Workers Comp

As I write this, I have spent the day hauling water. Not in water trouble, with thirsty cattle standing there bawling for a drink, but just trying to stay ahead. We had a great start here in our country but the last 30 or 40 days have been hot and dry.

I know many of you are in a position of not having had that first rain. I pray better days are ahead for us all. I would like to encourage you with a saying from my friend Chris Beard, the new men’s basketball coach at Texas Tech: ”Tough times pass, tough people last.” We have all been in this spot before, and we are still here. Hang tough – better days are ahead.

We have been granted a bit of relief with the jumping mouse situation. Fences are moving and folks are communicating at the ground level and do their best to work together. A big thanks to Congressman Steve Pearce, Governor Susana Martinez, New Mexico Director/Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte, New Mexico State Engineer Tom Blaine, the U.S. Forest Service leadership in Region VI and several others who have been so diligent and persistent in seeking relief for our beleaguered members and neighbors in Otero Country. We will continue to watch and listen.

The news is not so good on the agricultural exemption for workers compensation insurance in New Mexico. The state Supreme Court has ruled as we had feared but expected. For the short term, you need to start working with your insurance agent to get coverage. Unfortunately, all the questions we have had for the past year remain. The New Mexico Cattle Growers’ Association and other groups are working to get some clarity and other options. We will keep you posted. Watch the website at www.nmagriculture.org , your email and Facebook for updates. By the way, have you checked out the website lately?  We launched a new site in mid June and we are getting a tremendous number of views. We also have moved the advertising sales on the site in-house. If you have questions on the advertising, please call the office at 505/247-0584.

We had a good ag group meeting early in July in Ruidoso. We discussed the coming election and the candidates. New Mexico is an interesting situation because every legislator is up for re-election. With the presidential election being so highly controversial, not to mention the usual raucous goings-on here, this election may prove to be one of the most important elections in history. We need to all turn out to vote, and encourage our friends and families to, also. Our vote is always important.

Another thing that is important is your membership in the New Mexico Cattle Growers’ Association. You can see from just this letter the variety of issues we are working on. It takes the support from every cattleman in the state and elsewhere to make a difference and to have people in the right places to make a difference. Please let me know if you need a membership application or have questions.

Until next time,

             Pat Boone

               Joshua 1:9