WASHINGTON -- The issuance of tax-exempt bonds by states to aid first-time farmers, which languished after passage of the Tax Reform Act of 1986, has been staging a comeback in the last couple of years, state officials say.

But that resurgence has been slowed recently by fears that the exemption for those bonds will not exist in a few weeks. First-time farmer bonds, or "aggie bonds" as they are commonly known, are a form of small-issue industrial development bonds, which are set to expire Dec. 31, unless Congress continues the authority to issue them.

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