[January 30, 2014]WASHINGTON — House Agriculture Committee
Chairman Frank Lucas issued the following statement Thursday after
the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Agricultural Act of
2014 by a vote of 251-166.
"I am pleased a majority of my House colleagues joined me in
supporting a five-year, comprehensive farm bill. I appreciate
the efforts of everyone who helped get us here. This is
legislation we can all be proud of because it fulfills the
expectations the American people have of us. They expect us to
work together to find ways to reduce the cost of the federal
government. The Agricultural Act contributes major savings to
deficit reduction, significant reforms to policy, and yet still
provides a safety net, not only for the production of American
food and fiber, but also to ensure our fellow citizens have
enough food to eat. I am hopeful this legislation will enjoy the
same success when the Senate considers it, and I encourage the
president to sign it quickly into law," Lucas said.
The Agricultural Act of 2014 includes the most significant
reduction to farm policy spending in history by improving
payments and limits producers to risk management tools that
offer protection when they suffer significant losses.
payments are reduced, eligibility rules are tightened, and
means tests are streamlined to make farm programs more
crop insurance, a successful public-private partnership that
ensures farmers invest in their own risk management.
historic reforms to dairy policy by repealing outdated and
ineffective dairy programs. Offers producers a new,
voluntary margin-protection program without imposing
government-mandated supply controls.
Supports small businesses and
beginning farmers and ranchers with training and access to
Food stamp reforms
The Agricultural Act of 2014 makes the first reforms to the
food stamp program since the welfare reforms of 1996, while
maintaining critical food assistance to families in need.
"heat-and-eat" loophole that artificially increases benefit
levels when states provide nominal assistance in the Low
Income Home Energy Assistance Program.
10-state pilot to empower states to engage able-bodied
adults in mandatory work programs.
from engaging in recruitment activities for the Supplemental
Nutrition Assistance Program and advertising SNAP on TV,
radio, billboards and through foreign governments.
immigrants, lottery winners, traditional college students and
the deceased do not receive benefits.
recipients are not receiving benefits in multiple states.
such as water dumping to exchange bottles for cash.
from existing employment and training programs.
from manipulating SNAP benefit levels by eliminating medical
marijuana as an allowable medical expense.
Allows states to
pursue retailer fraud through a pilot investigation program and
to crack down on trafficking through data mining, terminal ID
and other measures.
Increases assistance for food banks.
Additional reforms and regulatory relief
The Agricultural Act of 2014 includes multiple regulatory relief
provisions benefiting agricultural and forestry industries.
duplicative and overlapping conservation programs into 13.
Provides one year
of full funding for the Payment in Lieu of Taxes program, known
as PILT, which provides funding for vital services in
communities containing federal lands.
to the forest products industry by clarifying that forest roads
and related silvicultural activities should not be treated as a
point source under the Clean Water Act.
permanent subcommittee within the .Science Advisory Board of the
Environmental Protection Agency to conduct peer review of EPA
actions that would negatively affect agriculture.
coordination between the U.S. Department of Agriculture, EPA,
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration regarding the conflict between laws
governing pesticide use and the Endangered Species Act.
coordination between USDA and the U.S. FWS regarding actions
taken to manage the lesser prairie chicken.
Eliminates duplicative reporting
requirements for seed importers; requires improved economic
analysis of Food and Drug Administration regulations.