Whitfield Applauds Passage of Five Year Farm Bill
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield (KY-01), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power, today voted to pass the Federal Agriculture Act of 2014, which authorizes federal agriculture programs for an additional five years. The measure, which is an agreement reached in a Conference Committee between the House and Senate, passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 251 to 166.
“Farming is a way of life in Kentucky, and it is important that our farmers have the stability and certainty they need to adequately do their jobs,” stated Whitfield. “I believe farmers get this much needed certainty through this five year farm bill reauthorization, which is why I am pleased to support it. It also makes much needed reforms to the food stamp program for the first time since 1996 while maintaining food assistance for families in need.”
In addition to reauthorizing agriculture programs for an additional five years, the Federal Agriculture Act of 2014 reduces $23 billion in mandatory spending. Other items in the bill that are noteworthy include:
- Repeals the direct payment program and strengthens risk management tools;
- Repeals outdated programs and consolidates duplicative ones, eliminating nearly 100 programs or authorizations;
- Helps farmers and ranchers create jobs and provides certainty for the 16 million Americans working in agriculture;
- Strengthens conservation efforts to protect land, water and wildlife for future generations;
- Maintains food assistance for families while addressing fraud and misuse in the supplemental nutrition assistance program (SNAP), the first reforms since welfare reform in 1996; and
- Reduces the regulatory barriers for job creators while making critical investments in land stewardship.
In October, Whitfield joined with fellow Kentucky Representatives Brett Guthrie (KY-02) and Andy Barr (KY-06) to call on House Speaker John Boehner to move quickly on negotiating a conference agreement with the Senate, which ultimately helped enable the passage of the Federal Agriculture Act of 2014. Whitfield has also penned multiple opinion editorials calling for the passage of a long-term farm bill. They can be viewed HERE and HERE.
To learn more about the Federal Agriculture Act of 2014, click HERE.