Budget & Appropriations

budgetASA Positions

ASA’s appropriations priorities are to protect funding for crop insurance, export market development programs (FMD and MAP), food aid, agricultural research, conservation practices on working lands, and Inland Waterways and Harbor Maintenance Trust Funds. ASA also supports funding for EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs.

For FY2018/FY2019 Agriculture Appropriations, ASA supports:

  • The White House request for $500 million for USDA/RUS to launch a loan-and-grant program for deploying broadband in rural America
  • $425 million for the Agricultural and Food Research Initiative (AFRI)
  • Full funding for USDA working lands conservation programs, including CSP, EQIP and RCPP
  • Not less than $1.58 billion to fund international food assistance programs
  • $200 million for MAP and $34.5 million for the FMD Program

For FY2018/FY2019 Energy & Water Appropriations, ASA supports:

  • Full use of Inland Waterways Trust Fund revenues
  • Increased funding for Corps of Engineers’ Operations & Maintenance
  • Increased funding for Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund for maintenance and construction of ports and harbors

For FY2018/FY2019 Interior and Environment Appropriations, ASA supports:

  • Funding for EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) at the authorized levels of $128 million

For more information on Budget & Appropriations, visit:

Issues Background

Broadband

The first recommendation of the Administration’s Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity was to expand e-connectivity in rural areas. Subsequently, the White House has proposed providing $500 million in FY2018 for a USDA/RUS grant/loan program to deploy broadband in rural areas. The grant component would support projects that would not otherwise cashflow.

Agricultural and Food Research Initiative (AFRI)

AFRI is the Nation’s premier competitive, peer-reviewed research program for fundamental and applied sciences in agriculture. ASA has strongly supported AFRI since its creation in the 2008 farm bill.  The 2014 farm bill authorizes AFRI funding of $700 million annually. Even with the small but steady increases Congress has provided to AFRI, the FY2017 funding of $375 million was well short of authorized levels. For FY2018, both the House and the Senate continued funding at $375 million. FY2018 appropriations have not been finalized by Congress.

The President’s FY2019 budget requests $375 million for AFRI.

ASA supports at least $425 million for AFRI in FY2019 and full funding of $700 million annually as soon as practicable.

Conservation Funding

ASA supports the levels of mandatory farm bill funding for private lands conservation programs, including the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), and the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) established in the 2014 farm bill. RCPP encourages partnerships to increase the restoration and sustainable use of soil, water, wildlife and related natural resources on regional or watershed scales. Several state soybean associations are partners in RCPP programs.

The President’s FY2019 budget would completely eliminate CSP – USDA’s largest working lands program.

This proposed elimination would also impact RCPP because RCPP is partially funded through a carve-out of 7% of CSP funding.

ASA opposes opening the 2014 Farm Bill outside the Farm Bill reauthorization process. ASA opposes cuts or changes to conservation programs through the appropriations process.

International Food Assistance

American farmers play a significant role in alleviating world hunger. ASA supports all in-kind U.S. food aid programs and uses of food in development and emergency assistance to developing nations.

For FY2019, ASA supports not less than $1.58 billion in total food assistance funding, including:

  • $201 million for the McGovern-Dole Global Food for Education Program
  • $1.46 billion for P.L. 480 Title II (Food for Peace)

However, the House Ag Appropriations Bill is set to reduce these programs to:

  • $184 million for the McGovern-Dole Global Food for Education Program
  • $1.4 billion for P.L. 480 Title II (Food for Peace)

The Consolidated Appropriations Act passed in May had the $1.466 billion for P.L. 480 and boosted it with another $134 million to reach $1.6 billion.

Export Promotion Programs

Export development programs, including the Market Access Program (FMD) and the Foreign Market Development Program (FMD), have helped build an export market of $150 billion for 2014. The public-private partnership among soy producers, the soy industry and the U.S. government creates a significant and positive boost to the U.S. economy.

For FY2019, ASA supports:

  • Maintaining the authorized $200 million in mandatory funding for MAP
  • Maintaining the authorized $34.5 million in mandatory funding for the FMD program

Interior & Environment Appropriations Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP)

The OPP, authorized in the Pesticide Registration Improvement Extension Act (PRIA), is critically important to ensure timely and thorough review, registration, and reapproval of crop protection tools for producers. Staffing has been reduced in recent years and funding well below statutory levels, which results in inefficient and slow approvals of products.

Funding for OPP comes from three accounts within EPA:

  • Science and Technology: Pesticide licensing
  • Environmental Programs and Management: Pesticide licensing
  • State and Tribal Assistance Grants: Categorical grant: Pesticides Program Implementation

For FY2019 Interior and Environment Appropriations, ASA supports:

Funding for EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) at the statutory levels of $128 million.

Energy & Water Appropriations

The successful policy changes achieved in the 2014 Water Resources Reform & Development Act (WRRDA) must continue to be reflected in the annual Energy & Water appropriations bill.

  • Appropriate the highest level of funding that can be supported by the inland waterway barge fuel fee revenues received into the Inland Waterways Trust Fund (IWTF).
  • At least $3.5 billion for the Corps of Engineers’ Operations & Maintenance (O&M) account.
  • Continue to increase annual appropriations toward fulfilling agreement for full use of the Harbor

Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) revenues for maintenance & construction of ports and harbors.

Download ASA Position Paper on Budget & Appropriations
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