A Feedstuffs article covers the additional ag disaster funds allocated for WHIP+ expansion for 2021 and $750 million to cover livestock losses.
The Continuing Resolution introduced by the House on Tuesday provides critical assistance for producers across the country who have experienced severe weather conditions in 2020 and 2021. The proposal includes $10 billion in funding to continue the WHIP+ Program for 2020 and 2021 losses. In addition, $275 million is also made available for the Emergency Watershed Protection Program and $750 million for livestock losses in 2021.
In July, the House Agriculture Committee marked up and unanimously advanced a bipartisan Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute to H.R. 267, the 2020 WHIP+ Reauthorization Act, with many of those provisions now contained in the CR. The CR bill would fund the government until Dec. 11, 2021, if passed by the Senate and signed by President Biden.
House Agriculture Committee Chairman David Scott, D-Ga., says he’s proud of the bipartisan work the House Agriculture Committee did with H.R. 267 to write many of the important provisions that are now contained in the ag disaster section of the CR.
“The ag disaster assistance contained in the continuing resolution is absolutely critical to helping producers impacted by the devastating weather we’ve seen this year and last,” says Scott.
In June, a historic heatwave with temperatures reaching as high as 120 degrees Fahrenheit devastated farmers in the Pacific Northwest. In many instances, agricultural producers in the region couldn’t access federal relief because these programs typically only cover wildfires, droughts and other extreme weather events. This is the first time that excessive heat has been covered in WHIP+.
In addition to providing this supplemental WHIP+ assistance to producers, the CR also will bring more producers into the federal crop insurance program by requiring that recipients of this assistance purchase crop insurance or Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program or NAP coverage for the next two crop years after receiving assistance.
“The disaster relief included in this package can’t come a moment too soon. From the drought in the West Coast and Upper Plains – and now the Upper Midwest – to derechos and floods, this package will help producers whether they’re impacted by severe drought or heavy rains and winds,” says House Agriculture General Farm Commodities and Risk Management Subcommittee Chair Cheri Bustos, D-Ill. “It also requires any producer who receives a payment under WHIP+ to enroll in crop insurance, and we know that the more acres we have enrolled in crop insurance, the less we’ll have to rely on disaster programs like this one.”
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CR includes $10 billion in Ag Disaster Assistance