Ag Relief Included in Federal Spending Bill

Published online: Oct 04, 2021 News
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Senate majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced last Wednesday that a deal was reached between Senate Democrats and Republicans on a continuing resolution to keep the government funded through Dec. 3. After considering several amendments on the Senate Floor, the Senate voted 65-35 on Thursday to pass the continuing resolution and supplemental appropriations for Afghan refugee resettlement and disaster assistance. The House then passed the CR and supplemental funding by a 254-175 vote, which was signed into law by President Biden.
 
The bill contains $10 billion for agriculture disaster assistance programs and extends coverage to disasters that occurred over the last two years. Those losses originally included a wide range of disasters, including droughts, wildfires, hurricanes, floods and other events. Excessive heat and smoke exposure were added late in the process to address challenges that have been emerging this summer. Additionally, the bill provides $200 million to the Bureau of Reclamation for projects to address drought in the West.
 
House agriculture committee chairman David Scott applauded the disaster assistance said in a statement, “I am proud of the bipartisan work the House Agriculture Committee did with H.R. 267 to write many of the important provisions that are now contained in the ag disaster section of the CR… Inclusion of these provisions is the fastest way to get this critical assistance out the door to our producers, and it will bring more producers into the crop insurance program.”