Shelby Co. (ECWd) –
The Shelby County Farm has been the subject of more misinformation than we thought possible, and just when we thought things were going in the right direction, the current contract is ignored.
For months we have raised the issue of selling the crop, as in how are they going to do it as it is a county asset, typically subject to competitive bidding. While County Board Chairman Bryan Coffman continued to imply this was some major hurdle, the Farm Committee failed to address the matter.
We understand the bean crop has been harvested, however, at this time we do not know, nor do at least 2 farm committee members, where the grain was taken or what was done with it. Was it sold? Was it stored to be sold at a later time?
According to the contract, delivery was supposed to be complied with according to direction from the Shelby County Farm Committee.
“Harvested crops will be delivered by the Custom Operator to a terminal chosen by the Shelby County Farm Committee.”
Since the committee failed to meet and resolve this matter, it would appear the contract was ignored. While we understand it’s that time of year for crops to be harvested, the farm committee has had all year to resolve this very simple issue and they did nothing to address it as a committee.
All they needed to do is request bids for fall-harvested beans across the scale. All the elevators needed to respond with was that they would pay the rate established for the day they are brought in. It’s not rocket science.
Rather than actually do the work in which they were elected to do, Jeff Slifer, the County Farm Committee Chairman ignored the need to have the committee determine delivery directions for the farmer.
This is yet another failure in Shelby County which appears to be set on doing as they please rather than what its own contract says.
Considering beans are currently bringing $13.55 a bushel, the county may have a nice windfall depending on the yield. If the 196.3 acres produce 65-bushel beans per acre, then they should see revenue of $172,891.23. If they do generate that kind of revenue we will hear a select group jump on the bandwagon and brag about how they “told us so”. We welcome that because we suspect they will be silent about the fact there was no cost to the county to get this crop in the ground, as well as current grain prices, are higher than in many past years. With such revenue from a custom farming program, it should be clear it made no sense to lease it out as they had for years.
Considering the contract for planting this year’s wheat crop is going to cost the county over $23,966.27, plus the inputs that have yet to be purchased, it will be interesting to see where the actual revenue falls this time next year when yet another bean crop will be planted and harvested.
We will update you with a new article once we find out the yield and revenue brought into the county.Farm Contract - fox