All eyes are now on the Senate to pass legislation to stop a potential rail strike

Ag groups are praising the action taken by Congress so far to avoid a rail strike.

After legislation to avoid a rail strike passed in the House, all eyes are now on the Senate.

The vote to ratify the contract brokered by the White House passed 290 to 137, with the separate bill surrounding paid sick leave passed mainly along party lines. Several ag groups have praised the action by Congress, like the National Corn Growers Association, who said they were pleased to see Congress take up legislation to ensure rail service continues to operate.

The NCBA also praised the passage but says there is another step.

“The pressure is on the Senate to move on this immediately because the cooling off period for unions is set to expire on Friday, December 9th, but any delays could result in supply chain disruptions as early as this weekend. Keep in mind that when you have hazardous materials that are used to make fertilizers, they can’t afford for those ingredients and chemicals to be on the rails if a strike were to occur, so they have to go ahead and spend that. That’s just going to cause further disruptions in the supply chain and a lot of pressure that’s unnecessary, especially for our cattle producers,” said Kent Bacus.

The NCBA is urging producers to contact their senators. There is no word yet on when that vote is scheduled to happen.