House Spending Bill Cuts Small Ag Funding


Ohio Action Alert

Two weeks ago, the House passed its spending bill (“continuing resolution”) for Fiscal Year 11 – the year we’re in right now. Their bill would cut over $5.2 BILLION from agriculture – a disproportionate share of the budget! (a 22% cut, compared with 6% from other sectors.)

While the bill does not cut the Farmers Market Promotion Program, the House does cut severely into many programs that underpin the profitability of farmers who sell at our farmers markets and the communities that our markets serve. For example, farm credit (especially for beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers) is severely cut, as are conservation programs (over $500 million cut out of just four conservation programs!) and many research and outreach programs. The bill completely eliminates key programs like ATTRA (the National Sustainable Information Service), the Organic Transitions Research program, and many others.

The Senate is our only hope for pushing back, and we urgently must push our Senators to do so. Please call both our senators and ask them to oppose unjust spending cuts affecting small farms and sustainable and organic farmers.

Sherrod Brown
http://brown.senate.gov/
p (202) 224-2315
f (202) 228-6321
Web Form:  http://brown.senate.gov/contact/

Rob Portman (R - OH)
p (202) 224-3353
Web Form: http://portman.senate.gov/contact_form.cfm

The bill (H.R. 1) unfairly targets programs that serve sustainable and organic farmers.  It makes deep cuts in farm credit, agricultural research, and extension.  It slashes funding provided in the 2008 Farm Bill for conservation and would terminate programs that serve beginning and minority farmers without making any cuts to commodity or crop insurance funding. The cuts are reckless and unjust, threatening economic recovery in rural communities struggling to create jobs, find new markets, and renew economic life.

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