Rep. Austin Scott, Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology and Foreign Agriculture, held a public hearing to review the impact of enforcement activities by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) on specialty crop growers. Specifically, Subcommittee Members addressed growing concerns that DOL is using the "Hot Goods" provision under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA) in an arbitrary manner against producers of perishable agricultural commodities without regard for the inevitable destruction of the product and significant economic hardship inflicted on farmers and their employees.
Agriculture Committee Leaders Applaud House Passage of Roadmap for Renewable Energy Production
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a resolution that sets an ambitious goal to expand renewable energy production in the United States over the next two decades.
The 25 by ’25 Resolution (H.CON.RES. 25) expresses the sense of Congress that by the year 2025, at least 25 percent of the total energy consumed in the United States should come from homegrown renewable sources. Currently, renewable energy sources provide about 6% of the United States’ total energy needs.
“The 25 by ‘25 Resolution is a statement of our national commitment to support the development of renewable energy sources,” Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson said. “I believe that we can not only meet but exceed the goal of 25 percent by 2025, but every journey starts with a first step, and this resolution is a very important first step to national energy independence.”
“Increased development of renewable energy opens new markets for our nation’s producers, provides consumers with a safe, sustainable, environmentally friendly, and renewable source of energy, and decreases our nation’s dependency on foreign oil. I commend the House for recognizing the important role American agriculture plays in domestic energy production and I look forward to working with my colleagues and the industry as we work to turn the goal of 25x’25 into a reality. Working to ensure that the benefits of expanded markets for agricultural products are available to the entire agriculture sector is a top priority for me and I believe in this sector’s ability to provide the market with reliable, sustainable renewable energy sources,” said Ranking Member Bob Goodlatte.
Chairman Peterson and Ranking Member Goodlatte introduced the 25 by ’25 Resolution in January, and a bipartisan group of 72 co-sponsors have signed on to support the resolution. The House Agriculture Committee approved the resolution in May and reported it favorably to the House floor.
The resolution recognizes the important role of agriculture-based energy sources, including ethanol and biodiesel in the growing renewable energy industry. It also reinforces the importance of maintaining a safe, abundant and affordable domestically produced supply of food, feed and fiber as the nation pursues energy independence.