Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney arrives for testimony before the Senate Budget Committee February 13, 2018 in Washington, DC. Win McNamee/GettyImages
Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney arrives for testimony before the Senate Budget Committee.

Trump budget unveiled; lawmakers pledge support for Farm Bill

The budget proposal cuts Farm Bill investments by $260 billion.

The Trump budget was released Feb. 12, 2018 by Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney.

The $4.4 trillion budget proposal cuts domestic programs, increases military funding and adds to the federal deficit. The blueprint has little to no chance of being enacted, it is more a vision statement by Trump. – The New York Times

Here’s some reactions we’ve received:

“The proposed cuts to both the USDA and the Farm Bill would hurt American agriculture, neglect rural businesses, and leave families and seniors behind,” said Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Michigan, Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, & Forestry. The president’s budget cuts USDA funding by 16% on top of cutting Farm Bill investments by $260 billion, Stabenow said, which is a nearly $30 billion increase from Farm Bill cuts in the previous year’s proposal. “If taken seriously, this budget would make it impossible for Congress to pass a Farm Bill this year. Our farmers and small towns can count on me to oppose these cuts and instead work to pass a bipartisan Farm Bill that supports our rural communities and families.”

“As Chairmen of the Agriculture Committees, the task at hand is to produce a Farm Bill for the benefit of our farmers, ranchers, consumers and other stakeholders,” said Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and House Agriculture Committee Chairman K. Michael Conaway, R-Texas, in a joint statement. “This budget, as with every other president’s budget before, will not prevent us from doing that job. We are committed to maintaining a strong safety net for agricultural producers during these times of low prices and uncertain markets and continuing to improve our nation’s nutrition programs.”

"The time and place to debate Farm Bill programs is during the Farm Bill reauthorization, not the annual budget process,” said the National Corn Growers Association in a media statement. “The Farm Bill represents a 5-year commitment to America's farmers and ranchers, which Congress made in 2014, and is preparing to reauthorize again this year. We are counting on Congress to honor that commitment, and reject cuts that would be harmful for rural America. These proposed budget cuts would simultaneously hurt farmers' ability to manage risk and grow their revenues by undermining the financial wellbeing of the companies upon which they depend.” 

“To say that this budget is disappointing is an understatement,” said National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson. “This administration has consistently demonstrated a lack of support for the most vulnerable populations, and this plan is just more of the same. It is frankly disgusting that the government has offered corporations and the wealthiest among us a $1.5 trillion gift in the form of tax cuts while proposing deep cuts to programs so important for low- and middle-class Americans. 

“The proposed cuts in crop insurance and farm programs make this budget a non-starter,” said American Soybean Association President John Heisdorffer, a farmer from Keota, Iowa. “It would also eliminate the MAP and FMD export promotion programs, which we rely on to expand our reach into new and existing export markets around the world. Additionally, in this budget, we’re looking at ill-advised cuts to international food assistance programs, conservation programs and to valuable agricultural research.”

Source: Office of Sen. Debbie Stabenow, House Agriculture Committee, Senate Agriculture Committee, NCGA, NFU, ASA

EPA’s proposed budget

Trump’s proposed budget for the EPA provides $6.146 billion to support the agency’s new FY 2018 – FY 2022 Strategic Plan and mission of protecting human health and the environment.

Details of the fiscal year 2019 budget proposal include:

  • Cleaning up Contaminated Land: In FY 2019, the Superfund program is funded at $1.089 billion, which will provide support to states, local communities and tribes in their efforts to assess and cleanup contaminated sites in the United States and return them to productive use.  EPA will maximize the dollars appropriated by Congress to reduce administrative costs, identify efficiencies, and prioritize the cleanup of sites. EPA also will invest over $109 million in support for brownfields to help communities oversee, assess, safely cleanup and redevelop brownfield properties. 
  • Improving America’s Air Quality: The budget provides approximately $410 million to manage and support air quality work with state, tribal and local partners through common sense standards, guidelines, and grant assistance. The proposal includes $100 million to perform key activities in support of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards and air toxics standards.  The Budget proposes new authority to establish user fees for entities that participate in the Energy Star program. 
  • Providing for Clean and Safe Water:  The FY 2019 budget includes $2.26 billion for the Drinking Water and Clean Water State Revolving Funds and $20 million for the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act program to help improve the nation’s water infrastructure. The budget request includes $84 million for drinking water programs to continue to partner with states, utilities, and other stakeholders to identify and address current and potential sources of drinking water contamination.
  • Protecting Water Bodies of National Significance: The budget also provides funding to conduct long-term monitoring and coordinate monitoring efforts at water bodies of national significance, including $7.3 million for the Chesapeake Bay program and $30 million for the Great Lakes Restoration program. 
  • Ensuring the Safety of Chemicals in the Marketplace: In addition to fees, $58.6 million is requested in FY 2019 for the Toxic Substances Control Act Chemical Risk Review and Reduction program to support this high priority work.  EPA will work aggressively to complete the 10 chemical risk evaluations initiated in December 2016, continue prioritization efforts to identify future chemicals for evaluation and evaluate new chemicals. 
  • Supporting State and Tribal Partners:  In FY 2019, the budget includes $597 million in funding for State and Tribal Assistance Categorical Grants in direct support of these partners. Included within this funding is $27 million for the Multipurpose Grant program to provide greater flexibility to our partners in implementing environmental programs. The Agency will continue to advance cooperative federalism by working with states and tribes to target core grant resources and provide needed flexibility to address their specific priorities.
  • Reducing and Eliminating Programs: EPA continues to examine its programs to identify those that create unnecessary redundancies or those that have served their purpose and accomplished their mission. The FY 2019 President’s Budget identifies and eliminates a number of programs and activities totaling $598.5 million. Details can be found in the proposed budget.  
  • Reforming Agency Operations: The Budget includes the EPA’s reform plan to support the President’s Executive Order on a Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing the Executive Branch.  The plan includes a series of projects focused on managing EPA programs more effectively and delivering results, including streamlining EPA’s permit review process, deploying a Lean Management System, and reducing unnecessary reporting burdens on the regulated community.

For more information on EPA’s FY 2019 proposed budget, please visit https://www.epa.gov/planandbudget/fy2019 

Source: EPA

Related articles:

The White House budget published Monday is Trump’s fiscal year 2019 budget, which calls for significant cuts to federal spending but does not call for balancing the budget within the next 10 years. The budget, written by budget director Mick Mulvaney, is a request to Congress regarding spending and tax policy, and a statement of Trump’s priorities. It is not law or legislation. – Washington Examiner

The budget proposal Trump sent to Congress Monday would allow $1.2 trillion in discretionary spending in 2019, including $23 billion for border security and immigration enforcement, $21 billion for infrastructure, and $17 billion to combat the opioid epidemic. – USA Today 

Many federal agencies — including the State Department, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Interior Department — would see budget cuts compared to the fiscal 2017 enacted level. Some agencies and programs — such as the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the National Endowment for the Arts, the TIGER grant program for infrastructure projects and the Community Development Block Grant program — would be eliminated.  – The Hill 

TAGS: Farm Policy
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