House Ag Committee delays vote on $94B in new ag spending
No details known on the estimated $28 billion in new conservation funding for climate smart ag practices.
Jacqui Fatka, National Hog Farmer
Sep 11, 2021
The House Agriculture Committee marked up Friday into the evening its portion of new ag funding under the agriculture committee’s jurisdiction of what would be included in the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package that Congress hopes to pass in the upcoming weeks. Members from both sides of the aisle expressed concerns on the process, including lack of details of the estimated $94 billion in new spending, including an $89.1 billion increase in deficit spending.
After many technical difficulties and delays to assure members could vote virtually, House Agriculture Committee Chairman David Scott, D-Ga., called for a recess after nine hours of debate of the markup. He says a final vote on the remaining 30 amendments, and the bill as a whole, would not come until sometime early in the week of September 13. Although very few votes were called during the markup, the clear partisan breakdown of support was evident across all introductions of amendments to preserve a party line consensus.
In opening up the committee’s markup, Scott says specifically, the bill invests $7.75 billion in ag research and infrastructure; $18 billion for access to clean water in rural America and investments in renewable energy; and $40 billion in forestry programs. However, the markup did not address the estimated $28 billion in conservation funding and climate-smart agriculture investments as the Congressional Budget Office continues to estimate what proposals would cost.
Rep. Abigail Spanberger, D-Va., who is chair of the subcommittee on conservation and forestry, posed significant concerns that the committee was proceeding on marking up the bill without details of the $28 billion in conservation spending. She says she introduced and advocated for many of the components of what is expected to be in the final package...
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