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Farm groups react to Trump budget proposal

Farmer member organizations are disappointed with President Donald Trump’s proposed budget blueprint which includes more than $4 billion in cuts to USDA.

Roger Johnson, President of the National Farmers Union says the cuts come from USDA’s discretionary spending budget. “Which equates to a 21% drop for programs that serve rural and farming communities across the U.S. This huge cut to discretionary spending will put rural development, food safety, conservation and research programs on the chopping block,” says Johnson.

Johnson says the cuts will even hinder a key element of President Trump’s plans for regulatory reform. “It even limits the administration’s ability to rewrite or remove the unnecessary regulations that the President promised to address. Regulatory relief comes from having a system that works,” says Johnson.

The American Farm Bureau Federation says it supports USDA’s current funding levels. John Newton, Director of Market Intelligence says cuts to programs, like the USDA National Agricultural Statistic Service could directly impact commodity markets. “USDA reports help set the market, help price discovery for a lot of commodities” says Newton.

The National Young Farmer Coalition also condemned the blueprint calling it “a strange message for President Trump to send to the rural voters that helped elect him,” The organization says the cuts would take rural America backward, and make “rural life a less viable option for entrepreneurial young Americans.”

The budget proposal also includes more than $2 billion in cuts to EPA funding.

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