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John Hoeven

08/04/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 08/04/2021 13:28

Hoeven: Senate Appropriations Committee Approves FY22 Ag Appropriations with More Than $7 Billion in Disaster Assistance for Farmers and Ranchers

08.04.21

WASHINGTON - Senator John Hoeven, ranking member of the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Committee, today issued the following statement after the full Senate Appropriations Committee approved the Senate's Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration and Related Agencies Appropriations bill with more than $7 billion in disaster assistance to help farmers and ranchers with losses due to drought and other natural disasters. The legislation now advances to the full Senate for consideration. Specifically, Ranking Member Hoeven secured the following disaster assistance provisions:

  • $6.28 billion in disaster assistance to aid producers who suffered losses due to droughts, hurricanes, wildfires, floods and other qualifying disasters. The funding will extend WHIP+ to cover losses in calendar years 2020 and 2021.
  • $750 million for livestock producers for losses incurred during 2021 due to drought or wildfire. This disaster assistance will build on top of existing farm bill programs for livestock producers.

'Our agriculture appropriations legislation, with more than $7 billion in disaster assistance for our producers, is now advancing to the full Senate for consideration,' said Ranking Member Hoeven. 'We worked to include strong disaster assistance funding in the bill to help our farmers and ranchers through this tough stretch of severe drought and other natural disasters. At the same time, the legislation will help to meet the needs of rural America, including fully funding farm loans to provide producers with access to capital, strong support for agricultural research and continued investment in rural broadband. We're one step closer to getting this legislation, and these vital disaster resources, signed into law.'

As ranking member, Hoeven worked to secure additional priorities for North Dakota's producers and rural communities, including:

  • Making livestock markets more fair and transparent:
    • A provision establishing a pilot program for a cattle contract library at the Agriculture Marketing Service (AMS). The contract library would help improve price transparency in cattle markets and comes as part of Hoeven's efforts to ensure ranchers have access to fair and competitive markets.
    • An additional $2 million for AMS to enforce the Packers and Stockyards Act.
  • Funding to meet demand for farm direct, guaranteed and emergency loans, which provide farmers and ranchers with access to capital.

Highlights of the FY2022 Agriculture Appropriations Bill

Support for Farmers and Ranchers

  • Maintains support for crop insurance and other farm bill programs.
  • $5 million for the Wetland Mitigation Banking program, providing an important resource for farmers to remain conservation compliant.
  • $500,000 for blackbird depredation in the Northern Great Plains through the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS).
  • Directs the National Agriculture Statistics Service (NASS) to provide information on how the agency can improve the accuracy of their reports.

Agriculture Research

  • Additional $9 million for maintenance and repair of the Agriculture Research Service (ARS) facilities, like the Edward T. Schafer Agricultural Research Center.
  • $1 million for a new cooperative agreements with land grand universities, non-profits and other entities to support the research, development and acceleration of agriculture technology.
  • Provides strong funding for agricultural research conducted by ARS and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).
  • Maintains formula research funding for land-grant universities, including NDSU.
  • Increases the following research funding:
    • $1 million increase for sugarbeet research.
    • $1 million increase for the Barley Pest Initiative.
    • $1 million increase for the National Canola Research program.
    • $1 million increase for the Pulse Crop Health Initiative.
    • $1 million increase for the Healthy Soils Initiative.
    • $1 million increase for the Pulse Crop Quality Initiative.
    • $1 million increase for Genetic Oat Research.
    • $500,000 increase for the Alfalfa Seed and Alfalfa Forage Systems Research program.
    • Also maintains funding for the Wheat and Barley Scab Initiative.

Strengthening Rural America

  • $700 million for the ReConnect Program, a rural broadband loan and grant pilot program.
  • $5 million for the Rural Innovation Stronger Economy (RISE) Grant Program, which supports innovation clusters in rural regions.
    • RISE aligns with Hoeven's ongoing work to advance the development and adoption of the next generation of precision agriculture technologies.
    • To this end, Hoeven worked to previously provide $10 million across FY2020 and FY2021 for RISE, secured language to prioritize projects like Grand Farm and pressed USDA to implement the program, an effort which was successfully completed in June.

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