In the next couple of weeks each of Kansas Farm Bureau’s 10 districts will be holding their issue surfacing meetings. I am a little late with this for a couple of districts, and I apologize to the 2nd and 4th districts. Good timing has never been my thing. This is the beginning of our policy development process and something I would hope each member is involved in.

The fact that Kansas Farm Bureau’s (KFB) policy is completely developed from members bringing their issues forward is what gives our organization its influence. Legislators know each of our policy items were important enough to an individual to speak up and a majority of all our members felt it was worth addressing through policy.

If you are not familiar with our issue surfacing meeting, it is an opportunity for members to bring issues and concerns to KFB’s Resolutions Committee for further discussion and study. Often the committee members, district board member and KFB staff will have speakers to provide timely education.

The best part about this process is it often sparks a discussion by other members at the meeting which can awareness of an issue. It also is a time when we can see if the issue is one of greater concern or more localized in nature.

I would encourage you to find out when and where your district’s issue surfacing meeting is. They are all scheduled for the next month. If you are in a district that has already met, or you will not be able to attend your district’s meeting you can submit an issue at

Issues raised will be considered by the resolutions committee at its spring meeting. That topic will be discussed and, depending on committee action, preliminary policy may be developed throughout the spring and summer.

Other issues may be referred to the board of directors or sent to staff for further study. The results of the committee’s work will be the subject of our Listening Post meetings in every district this fall. Based on the results of those discussions the final policy recommendations will be made.

Then in December at Kansas Farm Bureau’s Annual Meeting the delegates will discuss and vote on the final policy recommendations that will go into our policy book and will be the road map for our time working with legislators in Topeka and Washington D.C.

This is a long and sometimes tedious process, but it does result in policy that is relevant and well thought out. Each and every policy begins with r members across Kansas brining an issue forward and having it supported by their peers. This system powers KFB’s advocacy in Topeka, which has led to many, many beneficial laws like our use-value property tax, protecting property rights and even the creation of KFB Health Plans.

I hope you will find out when your issue surfacing meeting is in your district and take the time to attend. I know everyone is busy, but I promise this will be time well spent.