President budget undermines rural America

By Anna Johnson and Jordan Rasmussen, policy program associates


Lyons, Neb. - Center for Rural Affairs policy associate Anna Johnson today said America stands to suffer as a result of President Trump’s 2019 budget, released this afternoon by the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) and the office of Management and Budget (OMB).

“The President has proposed again to eliminate or shrink many programs that serve rural America, including those supporting rural businesses, cooperatives, and housing,” said Johnson. “The President is also calling for an investment of $50 billion in rural infrastructure, but this could put the onus on states already struggling with the economic fallout of depressed commodity prices.”

In addition, Trump’s budget slashes working lands conservation programs by proposing the elimination of the Conservation Stewardship Program. Johnson said it would be a grave error to remove this vital support to farmers and ranchers.

“The Conservation Stewardship Program gives farmers and ranchers an incredibly important opportunity to plant cover crops, practice soil conservation tillage, and improve pasture land,” she said. “Eliminating it would do serious damage to our farmers’ and ranchers’ abilities to preserve water quality and build soil health while also maintaining productive operations.”

Another program threatened by the President’s budget is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP.

“SNAP is often the linchpin between rural and urban representatives in the passage of the farm bill, set to expire in September 2018,” said Jordan Rasmussen, Center for Rural Affairs policy associate. “The President’s budget strips away nearly $214 billion in funding for SNAP over the next decade.”

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