Tobacco Buyout - C.L. Holt, 2/16/01 8:49PM  

Hello, we are tobacco farmers from the state of Tennessee, Montgomery County
over the past several years we have experienced devastating times in
producing a tobacco crop as other farmers in our area with the weather and
the increase prices from supplies and leasing quotas due to the quota cuts we
are in a crisis ./ We need help// Most of our farming neighbors are in
financial trouble.  We are all around fifty-five years of Age.  All of the
farmers in my area that I have spoken with are in favor of the proposed
buyout but we feel that we need a fair market price and need this amount over
a short period of time and a tax break so that we can pay out of debt and
retire with some dignity.  The thoughts of training or schooling is not an
option because at our age who would hire us.  We need help and we need it
quickly because a lot of the farmers are near the brink of destruction.  Most
of the farmers have worked themselves to the point of a physical and mental
breakdown and continue thinking on the basis, next year will be better and
next year never comes.  They feel that a fair and reasonable amount of
compensation would be fifteen, twelve and four and over three years they also
feel that maybe it would be better to average over the 98,.99 and 2000 crop
year because of the droughts that hit our area.  Please let our voice be
heard in Washington you are our only voice and we need you to speak for us
and get results, the farmers in my area cannot hold on much longer.
William  Clemments
Major Centonze
Herschel Toler
Paul Mckinney
Billy Smith
D.W. Rawlings
Paul Rawlings Sr.
Paul Rawlings Jr.
Tommy Rawlings