Congressman Sanford Bishop

Representing the 2nd District of Georgia

House Passes 2010 Agriculture Appropriations Conference Report

Oct 7, 2009
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02) announced today that the House of Representatives voted to approve the Fiscal Year 2010 Agriculture Appropriations conference report. The bill includes more than $5.2 million ($5,223,000) in funding for projects in Georgia’s Second Congressional District.

“This bill comprehensively ensures the continued strength of our agricultural sector while addressing the growing need for research and development into alternative fuels, land conservation, and innovative ways to feed our nation’s most vulnerable,” Bishop said. “I am also pleased by the allocation of funds to some critical research and development projects that specifically address the needs of Georgia agriculture.”

The following projects, which will impact the Second Congressional district, were included in the FY 2010 Agriculture Appropriations conference report approved today by the House of Representatives:

* $346,000 – University of Georgia (UGA) for cotton insect management and fiber quality research
* $346,000 – UGA for water use and water quality enhancements
* $178,000 – UGA for Phytophthora blight on vegetables research
* $209,000 – UGA for blueberry production efficiency research
* $267,000 – Oak research and preservation
* $1,200,000 – National Peanut Laboratory
* $254,000 – Peanut Institute/Baylor Medical study of childhood obesity
* $2,423,000 – Georgia Water and Soil Conservation Commission

In total, the conference agreement appropriates $121.2 billion, which is $264 million more than the current level. This amount includes substantial funding provided by the economic stimulus law, or $12.8 billion (12 percent) more than regular FY 2009 appropriations.

More than 80 percent of the agreement's funding is for mandatory spending for programs such as crop support and food stamps. The bill includes $58.3 billion for food stamps, which, when combined with an additional $6.1 billion in FY 2010 funds provided by the economic stimulus law, will provide 19 percent more for food stamps than what is currently available. The bill also provides $16.9 billion for school lunch and other child nutrition programs, which is 13 percent more than the current amount; $7.3 billion for WIC, which is 6 percent more than the current amount; and $3.3 billion for the FDA, which is 19 percent more than the current amount.

Additionally, the agreement includes $910 million for the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, which is $24 million (3 percent) more than the House bill and $28 million (3 percent) more than the current level. The bill also provides $5.3 million for the National Animal Identification System.

Other areas of interest include a one-time $350 million in aid to dairy farmers, including $60 million to buy cheese and other products to shore up prices. Finally, the House-passed provision barring poultry imports from China was dropped and the agreement instead includes a Senate provision which allows such imports if the Agriculture Department determines that the poultry meets U.S. safety standards.

Once the conference report is approved by the Senate, it will go to the President’s desk for his signature.