Addressing concerns expressed by the community on why Assemblyman Devon Mathis voted for the recent Cap & Trade legislation (AB 398), Association President/CEO Roger Isom spoke on the need for the legislation for agriculture and that many have misunderstood the bill and its true impacts. Isom was part of an eight person panel that consisted of representatives from Western United Dairyman, California Dairies Inc., Southern California Edison, California Manufacturers and Technology Association (CMTA), California League of Food Producers, and Assemblyman Devon Mathis himself. Isom explained that this is a complex issue that has forced agriculture in a position where they are stuck. With the passage of SB 32 last year, the state has a mandate in law for businesses to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030. The state has two options to make that happen: “command and control” or “Cap & Trade”. The option with the least impact by far is Cap & Trade. Isom said “Let’s be clear. No one up here likes Cap & Trade or the whole greenhouse gas emission program. We’re the only area in the world with a mandatory program and it is killing us.” AB 398 provides the least impactful pathway for facilities subject to the mandatory reductions, and it also resulted in concessions that helped nut processors, tomato processors, milk and cheese plants, and poultry processing plants that are actually subject to the regulations.