Brooks, Roby vote to support agriculture in home states with House passage of 2018 Farm Bill

U.S. Reps. Susan Brooks (R-IN) and Martha Roby (R-AL) on June 21 supported agricultural commodities in their home states by helping U.S. House members pass the Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018, H.R.2, also known as the 2018 Farm Bill.

“Food security is national security, and after facing years of natural disasters and distorted global markets, rural America needs relief more than ever,” said Rep. Brooks. “I am proud the 2018 Farm Bill provides farmers the relief and resources they deserve.”

Among numerous provisions, the 2018 Farm Bill would renew and protect crop insurance for farmers; reauthorize commodity and conservation programs; provide regulatory relief by repealing the Waters of the United States rule; and would reform the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the nation’s food stamps program, according to a summary from Rep. Brooks’ office.

Brooks noted that the legislation upholds vital commodity programs, including corn, soybean and other top commodities produced in Indiana.

Rep. Roby added that she “was glad to be a voice for Alabama’s farmers throughout the process to ensure that our commodities receive fair treatment. This farm bill addresses many of the challenges farmers face daily, and that’s why I was proud to cast my vote in favor of the legislation.”

Rep. Brooks pointed out that American farmers across the country are suffering from a declining agricultural economy, with net farm income down almost 50 percent over the past four years. The Farm Bill, which is the federal government’s primary tool for agriculture and food policy, is reauthorized every five years.

The recently House-approved H.R. 2 includes new provisions that would strengthen work requirements under SNAP; such requirements already exist in her home state of Indiana, according to a statement from Rep. Brooks’ office. The proposed SNAP requirements would apply only to work-capable adults ages 18 to 59 and would not include senior citizens, individuals with disabilities, children or pregnant women.

“Policies like tax reform have enabled the opening of more than six million jobs across the country, and I am proud this bill helps work-capable people transition from the sidelines into jobs that have the possibility to turn into life-long careers,” said Rep. Brooks.

Rep. Roby added, “I am proud to serve Alabama’s Second District where agriculture is the largest employer, responsible for more than 93,000 jobs and more than $11 billion in economic impact. I know how critically important it is that Congress deliver agriculture policy that actually works for farmers throughout Alabama and our country and makes their important work easier, not harder.”

H.R. 2 now awaits further action by the U.S. Senate.