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Published June 21, 2012, 03:47 PM

Hoeven: Senate passes 'strong' farm bill

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Sen. John Hoeven the Senate has passed a "strong" farm bill that will create jobs and reduce the deficit.

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Sen. John Hoeven the Senate has passed a "strong" farm bill that will create jobs and reduce the deficit.

The five-year, half-trillion-dollar farm bill cuts farm subsidies and land conservation spending by about $2 billion a year but largely protects sugar growers. The vote was 65 to 34.

Hoeven says the bill provides $23 billion in savings and introduces a new, voluntary risk coverage program to help producers manage losses.

The measure now goes to the Republican-led House, where conservatives are certain to resist its costs.

The current agricultural program ends in September.

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