Cowboys at the Capitol

Northwest Collegiate Cattlemen’s Association members Ashlynn Lingle, Kaitlin Arnold, Garrett Louiselle and Abigail Oelrichs gather for a photo in the rotunda on the third floor of the Missouri State Capitol Wednesday, Feb. 27 in Jefferson City.

Students from an emerging campus organization visited the capitol to explain the importance of three agricultural bills to Missouri’s senators and state representatives Feb. 27.

Four Northwest’s Collegiate Cattlemen's Association officers attended the weekly Cowboys at the Capitol program. The program allows members from the Cattlemen’s Association to voice their opinions about problems within agriculture to state legislatures.

President senior Ashlynn Lingle, Vice President junior Garrett Louiselle, Co-Public Relations Chairman sophomore Abigail Oelrichs and Co-Public Relations Chairman sophomore Kaitlin Arnold visited the capitol. With the help of Northwest alumnus Sydney Thummel, who now works for the Cattlemen’s Association, and the connections that Louiselle had within the Missouri Cattlemen Association they were able to attend Cowboys at the Capitol.

All four students were able to speak with elected officials about the problems that the Cattlemen Association has as a whole.

The young Cattlemen spoke about three different bills. A House bill that covers property rights, another House bill that deals with integrity rights and Senate Bill 391. According to trackbill.com, Bill 391 “modifies provisions relating to county health ordinances.”

“It seems like right now we have a lot of issues within the agriculture and cattle industries that need to be advocated for to our senators and representatives,” Oerlichs said.

“We have a lot of bills that we are trying to pass, and us taking the time out of our day to go there and talk with each one of them and reassure them that we are here for a good cause really helped.”

“A lot of producers that live on county lines struggle with trying to compromise with both counties because there is a certain amount of feet past county lines that due to the overlap anyone living there has to abide by both counties,” Lingle said.

The Cattlemen’s Association decided to present the bill the legislation.

“So rather than having to pick the stricter enforcement, the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association wants to present a bill in the Senate that takes away all individual county rights and make one state law,” Lingle said.

Louiselle said it is important to get the younger generation of Cattlemen involved with the laws and legislation because they are the ones who will eventually take over the organization.

“The Cattlemen’s organization is the voice in legislation that (farmers) don’t have or don’t care to have,” Louiselle said. “The Cattlemen’s is the bridge between legislators, higher powers and people that we can’t directly talk to as producers. It gives us the ability to have a say in what happens with bills, laws, legislation and so many different things that we would not normally have the ability to do.”

The Collegiate Cattlemen’s Association officially became a campus organization Tuesday after Student Senate took a vote on the organization.

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