Because of the devastating drought happening in our country, House leaders are finally working to create a short-term bill that would aid farmers, mainly in the Midwest, whose cropland has been hit hard. With 55% of the nation’s pasture and land in very poor condition, and an addition 76 counties in 6 states being called ‘drought disaster areas’, the House cannot wait any longer to act. However, it’s still unclear whether or not lawmakers will use this opportunity to renew existing agriculture programs, or just pass a disaster bill that would give short-term relief to cattle, pork and poultry farmers, since many programs that once helped those farmers expired last year.
This disaster bill, that may aid some farmers through this drought, is ultimately a terrible idea, thinks Senator Debbie Stabenow, the Michigan Democrat who leads the Agriculture Committee-“If Congress does what Congress always does and kicks the can down the road with a short-term extension, there will be no reform, direct payments will continue, we’ll lose the opportunity for major deficit reduction and we’ll deliver a real blow to our economic recovery,” Ms. Stabenow said.
UPDATE: Follow this link to read more about the House’s official one-year Farm Bill extension.
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