Mar 31, 2017
Despite the fact that Midwest agricultural states strongly supported President Trump in his election campaign and contributed to his victory, provisions in the conceptual “Skinny Budget” have aroused concern both from farmers and agricultural associations.
It is proposed that the USDA discretionary budget will be reduced by 20 percent to $17.9 billion. Areas which will be cut include a support program for water and sewer systems in small communities, reducing statistical services, eliminating many positions at regional and county level and a reduction in food-aid programs including the National Program for Women, Infants and Children which generates demand for U.S. agricultural products.
The proposed cuts involve discretionary programs. Mandatory spending incorporated in the Farm Bill cannot not be reduced. The American Farm Bureau Federation representing farmers is concerned that staffing cuts will hurt the agricultural community. Representations will be made to the Office of Management and Budget before the comprehensive budget is released in mid-May.