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William S. Cohen Papers | Senate Legislative Materials on Agriculture

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MS 106.3.3.3 Agriculture 1979-1996 17 boxes

The files in this subseries chronicle some of the issues and concerns involving Maine agricultural industries, which include the potato, blueberry, dairy, poultry, and cranberry industries. As Chairman of the Oversight Subcommittee of the U.S. Senate Governmental Affairs Committee, Cohen conducted several investigations into agricultural issues important in Maine. During the 1980s, he initiated a meat and poultry inspection program and conducted an investigation into U.S. government trading policies in response to the subsidized Canadian potatoes which flooded the Maine market. Records related to agricultural issues can also be found in the Commerce, Trade, Government, and Environment subseries.

This group has two subdivisions, which reflect the work of the staff members who created them: a) Robert Umphrey and Robert Porter, 1979-1987, and b) Eben Adams and John Veroneau, 1989-1996.

Access to some of the records in the Agriculture series is restricted. See information at the subseries level. Consult the Special Collections Department for further information.

MS 106.3.3.3.1 Robert Umphrey and Robert Porter 1979-1987 9 boxes

Robert Umphrey worked with Cohen from 1979-1984 on agricultural, forestry, trade, and fisheries issues. These issues were turned over to Robert Porter in 1984, who handled them until 1989. Porter was also a staff member on the Subcommittee on Oversight of Government Management for the Governmental Affairs Committee from 1986-1987.
Files are arranged alphabetically, and they touch on problems in the potato industry, such as potato blight and the effects of the introduction of low-priced Canadian potatoes into the eastern U.S. market in the mid-1980s. A few files refer to the poultry industry, which declined rapidly in the mid-1980s due to high labor and feed grain-shipping costs. Cohen's efforts on behalf of the blueberry industry in Maine are also documented here. Due to a surplus in the Maine wild blueberry crop in 1983-1984, he initiated a pilot program that incorporated blueberries into the Federal school lunch program. Files on the dairy industry are also in this group, and they deal with the development of the dairy price support system and the decline of dairy farming in Maine.

Records include briefing memos, applications for economic assistance from Maine businesses to Federal agencies, studies and reports, "Dear Colleague" letters seeking Cohen's support on legislation, Maine Congressional Delegation correspondence, newsletters from the National Milk Producers Federation, and reports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Folder Titles

Agribusiness-European Economic Community Restrictions.
Agriculture, 1983.
Agriculture appropriation, Fiscal year 1985, 1986, 2 folders.
Agriculture clips, 1984.
Agriculture coop services (USDA) closing, 1983.
Agriculture Stabilization and Conservation Service (ASCS), 1983.
Agricultural export, 1982-1984.
Agricultural Fast Track Amendment, 1984.
Agricultural Weather Program, 1979-1981.
Agway, Inc., 1981-1983.
Aroostook County Trip, July 1984.
Aroostook County Trip, October-November 1984.
Aroostook flood, 1981.
Blueberries, 1984.
Blueberries, general info., background, 1984.
Blueberries, news clips, 1985.
Blueberries, pesticides, 1980-1982.
Blueberry surplus, acknowledgments, August 1984.
Broccoli, 1982-1983.
Canadian briefings, potato dump case.
Canadian briefings, potatoes, 1981-1983, 2 folders.
Colby Cooperative Starch Company, assistance applications, 1984.
Colby Cooperative Starch Company, production, inventory, profit and loss, 1983-1984.
Commodity futures: background info, November 1980.
Council of Farmer Cooperatives, April-June 1983.
Dairy export, international trade, 1981.
Dairy in Maine, 1985-1986.
Dairy legislation and general info, 1983.
Dairy, news and articles, 1984, 2 folders.
Diary price supports and general info, March 1981-June 1982, 2 folders.
Eastport, port development, 1979.
Economic Development Administration, 1983-1984.
Eggs, poultry: imports, 1983.
EnerGroup, Inc., 1981.
Enterprise zones, 1981.
Export trading companies, 1980-1981.
Export trading companies, 1982.
Family farms, 1979-1980.
Farm Bill, export, 1981.
Farm credit system reform, 1985.
Federal crop insurance, background, May-November 1982.
Fertilizer Institute, 1984-1985.
Food inspection, 1985-1987.
Food inspection, prior legislation, 1987.
Food inspection, memos and letters, 1987.
Food inspection, news articles and reports, 1987.
Food inspection, reports and hearings, 1987.
Food inspection, research and reports, 1987.
Food Safety Audit, 1986.
Fungicide: Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), 1986.
Industrial Outlook, 1985.
International Trade Commission, 1982.
Johnson Products, Fuel Alcohol Production from Potato Processing, 1980-1983.
L and S Sales, Inc., financial statement, September 1984.
L and S Sales, Inc., general info, 1984.
L and S Sales, Inc., performance, 1985-1987, 3 folders.
Laurel Plastics, c. 1980.
Maine grain terminal, 1982.
Maine Guarantee Authority, Umbrella Bond Program, 1981.
Market value appraisal: Potato processing plant, Caribou, Maine, 1982.
McCurdy Herring Petition, 1981.
Mearl Corporation, 1981.
Meat and poultry inspection reports, 1981-1986.
Meat inspection program, 1987.
Milliken Medical Center, Katahdin Valley Health Center, 1978-1981, 2 folders.
New England Council, 1982.
Organic farming, 1983-1984.
Paul, Dr. Allen B., 1979.
Pesticides: Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), 1982-1983.
Potato Blossom Festival, 1984.
Potato diversion, 1980.
Potato Dump Case, 1982.
Potato futures study, 1979, 4 folders.
Potato futures, background, New York Mercantile Exchange, 1979-1980.
Potato futures, general info, 1979-1980, 3 folders.
Potato futures, trading in Maine, 1979-1980, 2 folders.
Potoato, government procurement, 1983.
Potato import problems, pre-1981.
Potato market order, background, 1980.
Potato research, pre-1981.
Potato research and information, 1982-1983.
Potato Service, Inc., 1982.
Potato trade, 1981-1982.
Potatoes, 1980.
Potatoes, 1982, 2 folders.
Potatoes, Canada, general, 1982.
Potatoes, current issues, foreign import, 1984.
Potatoes, general info, pre-1979, 2 folders.
Potatoes: Maine Potato Council, 1982-1983, 2 folders.
Potatoes: Maine Seed Potato Board, 1980.
Potatoes: New York Mercantile Exchange, 1980.
Potatoes, newsclips, 1984.
Potatoes, newsclips, 1985.
Potatoes: seed potato import legislation, 1980.
Potatoes: seed potato imports, 97th Congress, 1980-1982.
Poultry, egg, avian flu, 1983.
Poulty embargo, 1980.
Poultry export, 1981.
Poultry industry in Maine, 1979-1982.
Poultry processing, 1985.
Press release, emergency loans for farmers, 1984.
Rural Electrification Administration revolving fund, S. 1300, 1983-1984.
St. John's irrigation funding, 1984, 2 folders.
Small Business Administration, 1981.
Smoked herring, 1982.
Soil conservation: American Soil Conservation Service, 1982.
Soil conservation: issues, 1984.
South Paris Utilities District, 1979, 2 folders.
Southern and Central Maine trip, August 1984.
Staley Manufacturing Company, general info, 1982-1984.
Sugar supports, legislation, 1981-1984, 2 folders.
Superior Mining Project, Aroostook County, 1982, 2 folders.
Tobacco price support, 1981.
United Fresh Fruit, 1980-1982.
University of Maine Cooperative Extension Service, 1984.

MS 106.3.3.3.2 John Veroneau and Eben Adams 1989-1996 8 boxes

John Veroneau handled agricultural and fisheries issues from 1989 to January, 1994, at which time he became legislative director for the Cohen office. These issues were then turned over to Eben Adams, who worked with Senator Cohen from 1992-1996.

Files are arranged alphabetically, and they deal with the potato, blueberry, and dairy industries. They also chronicle the development of the cranberry industry in the early 1990s in southern Maine. Significant legislation includes the Northeast Interstate Dairy Compact, which was introduced as S. 2069 and co-sponsored by Senator Cohen in 1994. This law helped to assure the viability of dairy farming in the Northeast.

Materials consist of news clippings, briefing memos, floor statements, Cohen's correspondence with the USDA, and his requests to the Committee on Appropriations for research funding. Reports from the General Accounting Office on crop insurance and pesticides, as well as reports on a number of issues from the Congressional Research Service and the Maine Dept. of Agriculture are also found in these files.

Access to some of the records in this sub series is restricted until 2017. Consult the Special Collections Department for further information.


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Contact the Cohen Papers: 207.581.2665 | spc@umit.maine.edu | Revised: 01/23/2014
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