The Commodity Credit Corporation will receive $30 billion to fund farm bill programs
By Diego Flammini
A piece of bipartisan House legislation will help American farmers as they continue to navigate the challenges associated with COVID-19.
The House of Representatives passed a stopgap funding bill Tuesday by a vote of 359 to 57 to keep the government running until Dec. 11.
The bill now heads to the Senate for a vote before the fiscal year ends on Sept. 30. The new fiscal year begins on Oct. 1.
Included in the bill which, if approved by the Senate, would prevent a government shutdown before the Nov. 3 presidential election, is $30 billion for the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC).
The government uses CCC money to fund programs like Agriculture Risk Coverage, Price Loss Coverage and Dairy Margin Coverage.
The bill also increases “accountability in the (CCC), which now prevents funds for farmers from being misused for a Big Oil Bailout,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a Sept. 23 statement.
A previous version of the stopgap bill excluded the CCC funding, causing lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to criticize the original legislation.
“I fought back against our leadership and said, We are not going to get behind this unless farmers get the aid (they) need,’” Cindy Axne, a Democratic House representative from Iowa, told KMA Land on Sept. 23.
“House Democrats’ rough draft of a government funding bill shamefully leaves out key relief and support that American farmers need,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Twitter on Monday. “This is no time to add insult to injury and defund help for farmers and rural America.”
Despite the back and forth between Democrats and Republicans, ag organizations are pleased to see farmers’ needs considered in this bill.
“While we were disappointed it recently became a political flashpoint, we are pleased lawmakers on both sides of the aisle recognize that these funds help sustain conservation programs and stock America’s pantry,” Zippy Duvall, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, said in a statement on Sept. 22.