Congressman Garamendi’s Amendment to Help Farmers Hard Hit by Drought Unable to Overcome Majority Opposition in House
WASHINGTON, DC – Today an amendment authored by Congressman John Garamendi (D-Fairfield, CA) to the 2015 Agriculture Appropriations Bill, H.R. 4800, fell short in the House of Representatives. The amendment shifting $50 million from office operations to immediate emergency drought assistance would have helped farmers immediately procure water conservation systems to help save their farms and keep workers employed.
Most qualified farmers in the emergency program are expected to contribute one dollar for every three provided. Americans in eleven states, including California, are suffering from a drought that is disrupting our food supply and costing our nation billions in economic losses. The amendment failed by a 148-276 vote, with almost all Republicans in opposition. More information on the Emergency Conservation Fund is available here. Garamendi is a Member of the House Agriculture Committee.
“Farmers in my district have been hit hard by horrific drought conditions, and they’re not alone. This is a problem felt throughout California and in ten other states. My amendment would have kept farms operating through the immediate implementation of water conservation systems. It’s unfortunate the House of Representatives didn’t give my amendment the consideration it deserves. There are farmers who are losing everything due to conditions completely out of their control,” said Congressman Garamendi.
Natural disasters can devastate farmland and grazing land and threaten the livelihood of farmers and ranchers who depend on the land on which they live. The ECP can help to lesson this burden, providing assistance in overcoming exceptional damage from storms and severe drought.