Washington, DC — House Agriculture Committee Chairman Larry Combest (R-TX) today issued the following statement regarding the agriculture provisions contained in President Clinton's Fiscal Year 2001 Budget.
"We asked Secretary Glickman to give us specifics on how the Administration intends to help farmers. To the president's credit there is something in his budget. Unfortunately, when you strip away the administrative actions, the risk management that we are already doing, and all the non-income support ideas, farmers are left with about $3 billion in income assistance for the crop year. That's less than half the amount Congress appropriated for that purpose in 1999. I seriously doubt farmers believe their economic problem is only half as severe as last year, but according to his budget, that's what the president seems to think."
"For the past two years, the administration has been sitting on the sidelines while those of us in Congress have been working with farmers and ranchers to find real solutions in both the short and long terms. I just hope that while we're out visiting farm country this year talking to producers about their needs, the administration doesn't just rest on their laurels, thinking that their work is anywhere near done."
This spring, the House Agriculture Committee will hold a series of field hearings throughout the United States. The topic of those hearings will be a comprehensive review of federal agricultural policy.