Concerns Nutrition Bill Will Hurt Farm Bill Chances
The House is expected to consider H.R. 3102 - the Nutrition Reform and Work Opportunity Act of 2013 - this week. The measure would cut 40-billion dollars from nutrition programs over 10 years. According to House Ag Committee Ranking Member Collin Peterson - the measure will only make it harder to get a new farm bill passed this Congress. Instead of appointing farm bill conferees - Peterson says the Republican Leadership has chosen to move forward with an unnecessary and divisive nutrition bill. He believes the bill should be defeated. But even if it is - Peterson's concern is that the debate will eliminate any remaining goodwill needed to pass the farm bill. Peterson says the House and Senate Agriculture Committees could work together and provide farmers, ranchers and consumers the certainty of a five-year farm bill if the House Majority would get out of their way.
National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson says separating nutrition programs from the farm bill was a mistake from the beginning. He says consideration of H.R. 3102 unnecessarily complicates the farm bill process - making an already complex process even more difficult. In order to achieve reform and create certainty for family farmers, ranchers, fishermen and hungry Americans - Johnson says the House needs to appoint its conferees to the farm bill conference committee so a five-year, comprehensive bill that includes nutrition and farm programs can be enacted. NFU urges House members to vote the Nutrition Reform and Work Opportunity Act of 2013 down and to work together to end the detrimental separation of nutrition programs from farm programs.
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