CONGRESSMAN BISHOP STATEMENT ON RELEASE OF DRAFT FARM BILL
Apr 16, 2018
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02), Ranking Member of the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, released the following statement concerning the proposed 2018 Farm Bill put forth last Thursday by the U.S. House Agriculture Committee:
“As a Member of Congress representing both rural and urban communities, the Farm Bill is of vital importance to me and my constituents. It provides certainty and support to the farmers that feed our nation and world, and provides dignity and sustenance to our most vulnerable citizens, particularly our students and seniors, through food nutrition programs.
“Many aspects of the Farm Bill have broad, bipartisan support. However, I have significant concerns about the proposed reforms to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). This program is widely considered an efficient and successful safety net that offers desperately needed support to those in need. More than 57,000 households in my district receive SNAP benefits, which is the highest number in the state of Georgia. Nationwide, 42 million people rely on SNAP. We live in the most prosperous nation in the history of the world, and no one should go hungry, lack access to fresh fruits and vegetables, or worry where their next meal is coming from. Reforms that would shame those that receive SNAP benefits or limit the ability of vulnerable citizens to receive the nutrition they need to survive would be major step backwards for our country. We must also focus on addressing the challenge of food deserts, which would likely be exacerbated by these proposed reforms.
“U.S. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway has acknowledged that this legislation is a work in progress. Accordingly, I look forward to an open, honest, and holistic approach that respects all who rely on the Farm Bill’s programs for a level of stability.
“As Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, which provides annual funding to the programs authorized in the Farm Bill, I will be closely analyzing the text and will work closely with the House Agriculture Committee and the rest of my colleagues in the U.S. Congress to ensure the enactment of an equitable and effective Farm Bill.
The text of the 2018 Farm Bill, as proposed by the U.S. House Agriculture Committee, can be found here.