Today’s quick hits, May 10, 2022

Immigration-reform vote possible: The tight labor market and high U.S. inflation rate could provide the impetus for a Senate vote ahead of the midterm elections on immigration reform, including revisions to the H-2A visa for agricultural guestworkers. (Roll Call)

More HPAI funds sought: Funding to combat highly pathogenic avian influenza, which has hit 291 domestic flocks and killed 37.5 million birds, should be a high priority when Congress sets the USDA budget for fiscal year 2023, said 10 senators in a letter. (Klobuchar)

‘Race to the bottom’: Aided by easily available county permits, farmers in the Central Valley are in a well-drilling frenzy despite a 2014 state law that was supposed to preserve groundwater supplies; legislators hope a new bill will slow the stampede. (Los Angeles Times)

Successes, gaps at gene banks: There has been tremendous progress by gene banks in the preservation of crop diversity for 25 major crops, but large gaps persist for crops such as millet, yams, potatoes and peas, said an analysis in the journal Nature Plants. (CIAT)

Fewer cod than ever: Maine fishermen, who caught 20 million pounds of cod annually in the early 1990s, caught less than 50,000 pounds of the fish last year, the smallest catch ever due to collapsing fish stocks and government quotas. (Associated Press)