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FY 11 Budget Deal to Cut Ag Spending $1.5 Billion

April 13, 2011
 
 

Agriculture will see budget cuts of around $1.5 billion over the balance of the current fiscal year via the deal worked out between congressional leaders and the White House last Friday. The plan is to be voted on this week in the House and Senate after the two chambers approved another short-term spending measure to keep the government running through this Friday.

The package funds USDA programs at $20 billion, $3 billion below the fiscal year 2010 enacted level and $3.2 billion below the President’s FY 2011 budget request. The bill provides $1 billion for Food Safety and Inspection, which is $10 million below the fiscal year 2010 level, while allowing for uninterrupted meat, poultry, and egg products inspection activities of the agency.

The CR also includes $6.75 billion for the Special Supplemental Feeding Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), which allows the program to support more than 9 million income- eligible mothers, infants, and children up to 5 years of age.

However, a statement from the House Appropriations said "All non-defense funding levels within this summary DO NOT include a 0.2 percent across the board reduction included in the legislation that applies to all non-defense programs, projects, and accounts."

According to the Senate Appropriations Committee, the continuing resolution (CR) to cover the balance of this fiscal year includes:

Food Safety and Inspection Service. The CR funds the Food Safety and Inspection Service at $1.009 billion, as compared to $1.019 billion in FY 10 (-1%) and $930 million in H.R. 1 (+8%). This funding level will ensure continued inspection of meat and poultry products and will allow the FSIS to continue modernizing its workforce and improving food safety systems.

Domestic Nutrition. The CR provides $6.748 billion for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), as compared to $7.252 billion in FY 10 (-7%) and $6.505 billion in H.R. 1 (+4%). This level will fully fund participation in the program. The decrease from FY 10 is due to lower program participation rates than originally estimated. For other domestic nutrition programs, the CR provides $394 million, as compared to $396 million in FY 10 (-1%) and $367 million in H.R. 1 (+7%). This includes funding for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program of $176 million as compared to $171 million in FY10 (+3%) and $151 million in H.R. 1 (+14%). The funding level for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program is adequate to serve all current participants.

Foreign Food Assistance. The CR provides $1.5 billion for PL 480 Title II, as compared to $1.69 billion in FY 10 (-11%) and $1.003 billion in H.R. 1 (+33%). The Public Law 480 Title II program provides emergency food assistance to the most vulnerable areas in the world. The McGovern-Dole Program, which provides school meals to the world’s poorest children, is funded at $199.5 million, as compared to $209.5 million in FY 10 (-5%) and $100 million in H.R. 1 (+50%). The decrease from the FY 10 level is due to the elimination of a one-time pilot project.

Research. The CR provides $2.353 billion for the National Institute on Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and the Agricultural Research Service, as compared to $2.523 billion in FY 10 (-7%) and $2.192 billion in H.R. 1 (+7%). This funding level is the result of the elimination of all earmarks, as well as other programmatic changes. Specifically within NIFA, the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative is funded at $265 million, as compared to $262 million in FY 10 (+1%) and $228 million in H.R. 1 (+14%). Funding for the Hatch Act is provided at $237 million, as compared to $215 million in FY10 (+9%) and $222 million in H.R. 1 (+6%). The McIntire- Stennis Cooperative Forestry program is funded at $33 million, as compared to $29 million in FY 10 (+12%) and $35 million in H.R. 1 (-6%). Funding for Smith-Lever Sections 3(b) and 3(c) is provided at $295 million, as compared to $298 million in FY 10 (-1%) and $268 million in H.R. 1 (+9%).

The CR rescinds $230 million in unobligated funding in the ARS Buildings and Facilities Account.

Rural Development. The CR provides $690 million for Rural Development Salaries and Expenses, as compared to $715 million in FY 10 (-3%) and $680 million in H.R. 1 (+1%). Most programs were reduced from FY 10 levels. For Housing and Community Programs, the CR provides $1.226 billion in budget authority while $1.424 billion was available in FY 10 (-14%) and $1.215 billion under H.R. 1 (+1%). For Business Programs, the CR provides $128 million, as compared to $185 million in FY 10 (-31%) and $152 million in H.R. 1 (-16%). Under Rural Utilities Programs, the CR provides $598 million as compared to $653 million in FY 10 (-8%) and $449 million under H.R. 1 (+25%).

Farm Service Agency. The CR provides $461 million for farm loan programs, as compared to $462 million in FY 10 and $463 million in H.R. 1. Program levels for several farm loan programs are lower in FY 11 due to higher subsidy rates. The CR provides $1.211 billion for salaries and expenses, as compared to $1.254 billion in FY 10 (-3%) and $1.064 billion under H.R. 1 (+12%).

Conservation. The CR provides $890 million for the Natural Resources Conservation Service, as compared to $1.008 billion in FY10 (-12%) and $856 million in H.R. 1 (+4%). This includes $18 million for the Watershed Rehabilitation program, as compared to $40 million in FY10 (- 55%) and $20 million in H.R. 1 (-10%). The CR eliminates the Resource Conservation and Development Program.

Farm Bill Savings. Total savings achieved through Farm Bill limitations are $1.502 billion.


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RELATED TOPICS: Corn, Policy, Livestock, Economy, Ethanol

 
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