To the editor: 

U.S. Rep. Angie Craig deserves thanks and credit for supporting farmers in Minnesota's 2nd Congressional District by sponsoring the Biodiesel Tax Credit Extension Act of 2019. This bipartisan legislation would provide a two-year extension of the biodiesel and renewable diesel tax incentive.

Cleary, Craig understands how vital agriculture is to her district and Minnesota. As a Minnesota soybean farmer in Craig's district, I applaud the congresswoman for standing up for producers.

Many industries - from farmers and biofuel producers, to fuel blenders and truckers - rely on the value of the tax incentive. If biodiesel production slows down, it would hurt all of these sectors.

Biodiesel production supports more than 60,000 jobs throughout the United States and nearly 5,400 jobs right here in Minnesota. Biodiesel, which is the only advanced fuel recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency, contributes approximately $1.7 billion in economic activities in Minnesota.

As a national leader in biodiesel, Minnesota needs to continue promoting the biodiesel industry and supporting in-demand jobs across the country.

Congress has traditionally renewed the tax credit for one or two years at a time, but allowed it to expire in 2017. The biodiesel industry has now waited 15 months for Congress to act. A predictable, long-term tax incentive would be best for everyone. Right now, this two-year extension is desperately needed and I hope Craig will convince her colleagues to follow her lead and support this vital piece of legislation.

Brad Hovel

Cannon Falls

Brad Hovel farms and also is a director with the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association.