National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson issued the following statement after the U.S. Senate passed the agricultural appropriations bill by a 69-30 vote:
“The passage of the Senate ag appropriations bill is a step in the right direction towards reducing our nation’s deficit while avoiding some of the more damaging cuts.
“We have maintained that agriculture will do its part to help reduce the deficit. The bill represents a 15 percent reduction in ag funding levels since Fiscal Year 2010. That is still larger than many other departments, but better than the 26 percent cut passed in the House appropriations bill earlier this year.
“NFU was also pleased that the Senate did not include a policy rider to defund the completion and implementation of the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) rule. The GIPSA rule will help restore fairness to the livestock market and ensure that independent producers are not at the mercy of large packers.
“Overall, the ag appropriations bill is a reasonable bill, and we hope that the final ag appropriations bill, after conferring with the House, closely resembles the Senate version.”
Source: National Farmers Union