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'Dairy Cliff' averted, milk prices won't double

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A deal to keep milk prices from doubling is part of the bill in Congress to avert the so-called "fiscal cliff."

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., told reporters that negotiators had agreed to extend portions of the expired 2008 farm bill through September,according to the Associated Press.

While dairy prices won't skyrocket, Stabenow says the deal excludes other provisions in the farm bill, like energy and disaster aid for farmers.

Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., voted in favor of the bill, but wasn't pleased with the farm bill exclusions. Franken is quoted on MPR.com as saying: "There are some provisions I most certainly don't like, particularly those in the extension of the Farm Bill: cuts in conservation and energy, and the gutting of the Beginning Farmers and Ranchers Program. But I'll continue to work to pass a five-year farm bill this year so that Minnesota's ag community has the support and certainty it needs. "

On Sunday, legislative committees in both the House and Senate had agreed to extend the farm bill in its entirety for one more year. But the House GOP had not endorsed the committees' extension agreement.

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