Lawmakers want assistance for producers dealing with depopulating
Some U.S. Senators from the Midwest are pushing for Congressional support in depopulating of animals. They want to secure agriculture department funding for pork producers forced to depopulate herds.
Some lawmakers say that producers need assistance for humane euthanization and disposal of hogs, which will require coordination of the human, animal, and environmental communities. The recent aid funding was not for that purpose.
Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says although it seems like the ag sector just got funding and although there may be some money left over in the CCC funding--it will not be enough for producers having to depopulate.
“I want to make clear the $19 billion dollars...was in anticipation of low prices just because of the pandemic...six weeks ago when we put that together, there was no idea on depopulating herds,” he said.
Sen. Grassley says that the first round of CARES Act payments will start going out to farmers June 1st and he is confident in that stimulus payment package.
“We’ve spent $3 trillion dollars with four or five different pieces of legislation, and it’s all borrowed money and it’d done with a legitimate purpose in mind and a lot of that money isn’t spent yet,” he said.
Before a fourth stimulus package is brought to Congress, Sen. Grassley says that the upper chamber is pausing for awhile to asses the needs after all the money is distributed.
The House is expected to vote on the fourth relief package this week: the “HEROES Act.” This bill would authorize $16.5 billion dollars in direct payments, compensate livestock and poultry producers with depopulation costs, plus additional aid for biofuel and dairy producers.
For all updates on the Coronavirus and how it impacts Rural America, visit our Coronavirus outbreak hub.