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Chairman Peterson Opening Statement at Business Meeting to Consider the Letter on Budget Views and Estimates

Washington, March 10, 2020
Chairman Peterson Opening Statement at Business Meeting to Consider the Letter on Budget Views and Estimates

WASHINGTON- House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson delivered the following opening statement at today's business meeting to consider the letter on budget views and estimates.

 [As Prepared for Delivery]

"We’re here today to consider the Committee’s budget views and estimates for fiscal year 2021 as required by the Congressional Budget Act and in compliance with House Rules.

"This should be a quick meeting, because our ask in this letter is equally simple: don’t cut our programs.

"The programs over which we’ve got jurisdiction are designed and built to handle the uncertainty that agriculture or other forces can dish out.

"We should also be prepared to talk about what additional help we may need to provide, especially as our farmers are faced with a growing number of questions related to weather conditions for spring planting, lack of access to international markets, and other hurdles in the economy.

"We are also now facing a situation where the working poor and our vulnerable populations—school kids and the elderly—may have a hard time accessing food. We are in a place where it’s likely we’ll need more resources, not fewer, to address the situation facing both farmers and those who need to eat.

"So that’s our ask: fund our programs at the levels we’ve set forth to ensure that safety net is available for both populations. And know that we may need to address both situations if we find that safety net is not adequate for either.

"And with that I recognize the distinguished ranking member from Texas for any remarks he would like to make."
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