Vilsack Addresses Spending Cuts

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack recently warned farmers and ranchers of the potential consequences of sequestration budget cuts that have already gone into effect.
Since January, Congress and the President have spent much of their time focusing on budget battles. With Democrats controlling the Senate and Republicans controlling the House, Congress is more deadlocked than ever.
This political paralysis lead the country over the sequestration cliff (the latest in a long line of fiscal predicaments that politicians in Washington have found themselves in). Across the board budget cuts are going into effect and could have a variety of unexpected consequences.
Secretary Vilsack recently spoke to a group of farmers in an attempt to vocalize some of those consequences. “From the producers’ perspective, there’ll be a reduction in credit available to farmers. That means $34 million less loan money available. That means 1,500 farmers won’t get loans to continue or start an operation,” he said.
“Our agricultural exports will be impacted,” said Vilsack, pointing out that marketing funds designed to boost U.S. exports will be cut. “We could lose as much as half a billion dollars in exports.”
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer