Senator David Perdue Secures Major Georgia Priorities In 2018 Farm Bill
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-GA), a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, secured numerous provisions important to Georgia in the Senate’s 2018 Farm Bill, which now awaits consideration by the full U.S. Senate.
“Agriculture is Georgia’s top industry. Growing up working on my family’s farm, I learned that agriculture is both a business and a way of life,” said Senator Perdue. “For years, I’ve been meeting with farmers across Georgia and stakeholders in the agriculture industry to see how we can make life easier for them to do their jobs. While this Farm Bill is far from perfect and there is more work to do, we are taking steps toward providing certainty and continuity to rural America.”
Senator Perdue’s provisions address a range of issues from safeguarding Georgia growers and producers, to modernizing existing programs like Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Here are some highlights:
- Protects Peanut And Cotton Farmers: Protects critical programs for Georgia’s top two commodities by preserving existing safety nets.
- Helps Pecan Growers Compete: Provides for the assessment of imported pecans so that foreign producers pay the same assessment fee as U.S. pecan growers.
- Connects Georgia’s National Forests: Includes Senator Perdue’s Chattahoochee Oconee Land Adjustment Act, which gives the U.S. Forest Service the tools they need to create a more contiguous National Forest.
- Encourages Self-Sufficiency: Eliminates the unnecessary subsidy on all rural development loan programs to allow the programs to become self-sufficient and save the U.S. Treasury approximately $50 million per year.
- Establishes Agriculture Scholarships: Creates a scholarship program for students attending Historically Black Land-Grant Institutions who want to pursue a career in the agriculture industry.
- Gives Flexibility To Land-Grant Schools: Allows land grant universities, like Fort Valley State, to carry over unused grant funds from year to year through the Carryover Equity Act.
- Cracks Down On SNAP Fraud: Puts in place a verification system to prevent individuals from receiving payments in more than one state at the same time.
- Verifies SNAP Recipients: Initiates a pilot program to verify earned income at the time of certification and recertification.
- Advances Timber Industry: Establishes performance driven research and development programs for advancing new and innovative wood construction materials.
- Prioritizes Turf Grass Research: Adds Turf Grass Research to the list of high priority research at colleges and universities.
- Strengthens Rural Cybersecurity: Allows rural utilities to use certain electric loans and loan guarantees from USDA to fund improvements to grid security and cybersecurity.
- Requests Critical Data: Establishes a report with necessary data to protect human and animal health against possible threats posed by imported dogs.
Senator Perdue is the only Fortune 500 CEO in Congress and is serving his first term in the United States Senate, where he represents Georgia on the Armed Services, Banking, Budget, and Agriculture Committees.
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