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Congresswoman Elise Stefanik

Representing the 21st District of New York

Stefanik Applauds North Country Wins in Final Farm Bill

December 11, 2018
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY-21) issued the following statement announcing her support for the final conference report for the Farm Bill:

“Throughout this process I worked hard to ensure our district has a seat at the table, and I am pleased to report that this final bill includes many important wins for our North Country farmers,” said Congresswoman Stefanik.

“Critically for our Dairy Farmers that have been facing a crisis in recent years, this legislation builds upon the wins in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 and creates a new insurance program to replace the failed Margin Protection Program.”

The Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) Program:

  • Creates new coverage levels for the first five million pounds of production
  • Reduces premiums on catastrophic coverage
  • Eliminates prohibitions of participating in both DMC and the Livestock Gross Margin Program
  • Provides a 25% premium discount for producers who lock in coverage levels for the life of the Farm Bill
  • In recognition of the failed MPP, producers who participated in MPP from 2014-2017 can receive 75% of their premiums in the form of future DMC premium credits or 50% in the form of a reimbursement

Stefanik added, “Furthermore, as part of the new DMC, language I advocated for will require a comprehensive study on feed costs.”

“Our farmers succeed when markets are open and our nation’s trade policies promote exports. This bill includes $200 million per year for Market Access Programs which help create new customers for American products abroad.”

“Rural broadband expansion is essential for the North Country. I was pleased to see this Farm Bill prioritizes grants and loans for projects that will provide minimum download speeds of 10mbps, an improvement for many areas in the North Country.”

“Throughout my time in Congress, I have worked in concert with the Northern Border Regional Commission to provide significant funding to projects across our district, and this final legislation expands the eligible counties list which will ensure that all twelve counties in our district will be eligible for these grant opportunities going forward.”

“Furthermore, as a Member of the Bipartisan Heroin Task Force, I am pleased this bill delivers $82 million per year to fight the devastating heroin and opioid epidemic through increases in telemedicine. That is in addition to the over $10 billion in funding that I have already supported and passed. Additional prioritization is given for rural development projects that provide substance abuse treatment.”

“I was pleased that my amendment to modernize the competitive forestry, natural resources, and environmental grants program was included.  This change will realign the priorities of the grant program to focus on researching the characteristics and ecosystem-wide impact of invasive species while allowing for restoration projects of native forests that have suffered severe levels of mortality caused by invasive species.”

“This final legislation includes important provisions related to conservation; including an additional $275 million in funding per year for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program and policy that will refocus the Conservation Stewardship Program toward soil health and mitigating the impact of volatile weather patterns.”

“I thank my colleagues on the conference committee for their work and for including my input in this final bill, and I urge my colleagues to vote in support of this critical legislation for our farmers.”

 

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