Top House and Senate Ag lawmakers are homing in on ad hoc disaster aid as a funding source to prop up farm safety net programs in the upcoming farm bill, amid expected scarce new federal dollars.
The search for farm bill dollars has begun. House Ag Chair Glenn GT Thompson suggested the need for more farm bill funding on a recent Farm Policy Facts podcast; “Looking to see if there’s ways to mitigate ad hoc, the disaster funding, which is important, but there’s too much uncertainty around it. And (looking) to build out existing programs to better meet the current needs.”
Programs like reference prices too low to trigger help farmers need amid soaring input costs, war, disasters, supply chain disruptions and more.
Senate Ag Ranking Republican John Boozman also put a spotlight on ad hoc disaster dollars recently as a funding source. Boozman; “We’re spending the money, anyway, $70 billion is a huge amount of money, compared with the $3 billion, less than $3 billion that are in the actual programs.”
Asking aloud, how to capture some of that 70 billion to put in standing programs like ARC and PLC, and enhance others like crop insurance and dairy margin coverage. Even more important as the House GOP majority fights to reign in the federal debt and deficit.