Thursday, September 23, 2010
Report from the U.S. House
Farmers backbone of our state
In North Mississippi, families, businesses, and local economies have suffered from last fall’s heavy rains and flooding. Over the past year, my office has received numerous phone calls from producers across the region that faced devastating crop loss from severe weather.
Recently, I was proud to announce the release of up to $550 million in crop assistance. I’ve been fighting for nearly a year to secure this critical funding and help provide relief for North Mississippi farmers who have been struggling to make ends meet since their crops were destroyed during last year’s unprecedented rainfall.
Securing any amount of disaster assistance funding has not been an easy battle, but it’s one that I am proud to have fought over the past year and to keep fighting today.
This week’s long-awaited funding would not have been possible without the hard work of Rep. Marion Berry and Senator Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas.
In December, I joined Rep. Berry in introducing legislation to provide timely disaster assistance. Sen. Lincoln, chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, and Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran introduced companion legislation in the Senate.
In addition, I invited USDA Deputy Under Secretary Michael Scuse to the First District and led him on a tour to show him the severity of last year’s crop losses, as well as the level of assistance hard-hit counties needed in order to recover.
I’ve also held various meetings concerning disaster assistance with members of the Mississippi Farm Bureau, the Mississippi Sweet Potato Council, and other producers throughout the First District and the state.
At last, all of our hard work has started to pay off. This assistance isn’t everything we wanted, but it’s a start.
I serve as the only member of the Mississippi delegation on the House Agriculture Committee, representing the agriculture interests of not only North Mississippi, but of the entire state.
I know Mississippi farmers are the backbone of our state, and I’m going to keep fighting now, and as the 2012 Farm Bill debate progresses, to make certain that the Mississippi agriculture industry has the resources it needs to continue creating jobs and contributing to our economy.
As always, please continue to keep me informed about your opinions and concerns by phone at (202) 225-4306 or by visiting my website at www.childers.house.gov.
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