House Budget Plan Would Gut Agricultural Programs

Photo By: Greg Skidmore
Photo By: Greg Skidmore

A recent budget proposal by the House Budget Committee Chair, Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan, would slash federal farm and crop insurance programs by billions of dollars, significantly more than had been agreed on by House and Senate agricultural leaders.

The recent budget proposal is part of the ongoing congressional debates over the economy and the deficit. In an effort to reduce deficit spending, Democrats and Republicans in the House and Senate have agreed to significantly reduce federal safety net programs, including reductions to farm subsidies and agricultural support programs. Last month, the House and Senate agricultural committees agreed to about $23 billion in farm spending cuts.

These spending cuts would be part of the 2012 Farm Bill, which is currently being discussed by the House and Senate.

Representative Ryan’s proposal, however, has thrown a monkey wrench in the farm bill debates. Ryan’s budget is severe and mandates $10 billion in additional spending cuts. In addition, a significant amount of the spending reduction would come from vital support programs like crop insurance. The proposed bill would reduce, rather than eliminate, fixed, direct payments, and would reduce government support of crop insurance, lowering the federal government’s percent of crop insurance premiums from 60 to 40. According to Ryan, this move would allow “agricultural producers [to] assume the same kind of responsibility for managing risk that other businesses do”.

To learn more about agricultural financing opportunities contact a Farm Plus Financial representative by calling 866-929-5585 or by visiting

Follow us on: Twitter

Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer