Rep. Austin Scott Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Increase Funding for USDA to Respond to COVID-19

April 23, 2020
Press Release
Legislation provides an additional $50 billion in relief to producers.

WASHINGTON, DC - Congressman Austin Scott (GA-08), a senior member of the House Agriculture Committee, today released the below statement upon introducing legislation to support farmers negatively impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak and maintain the stability of the food supply chain.

“Food security is national security, which is why it is vital that our nation’s farmers have the resources they need to maintain operations and keep coolers, shelves, and produce bins stocked during this public health emergency. To meet those goals, I have introduced legislation to provide further relief to our agricultural producers to help ensure the stability of our food supply chain,” said Rep. Austin Scott. “I applaud the steps President Trump and Secretary Perdue have taken to maintain market stability, and I will continue to work with them to ensure they have the resources they need to support our nation’s farmers as we weather COVID-19 together.”

Last week, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the creation of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), which provides $16 billion in direct relief to farmers who have suffered losses due to market supply chain collapses and $3 billion for USDA to purchase fresh meat, dairy, and produce from farmers to distribute to food banks, community and faith based organizations, and other non-profits serving Americans in need. Click here to read more. Rep. Scott’s bill will provide an additional $50 billion for USDA to continue these programs and expand relief efforts for farmers and rural communities as necessary. Click here to read the text of the bill.

For the last few months, Rep. Scott has also been working to ensure agricultural producers have access to H-2A labor to maintain operations and sustain a robust food supply chain during this public health emergency. Click here to learn more.

Original co-sponsors include U.S. Representatives Ralph Abraham (R-LA-05), Rick Allen (R-GA-12), Cindy Axne (D-IA-03), Don Bacon (R-NE-02), Jim Baird (R-IN-04), Sanford Bishop (D-GA-02), Mike Bost (R-IL12), Buddy Carter (R-GA-01), Doug Collins (R-GA-09), Rick Crawford (R-AR-01), Henry Cuellar (D-TX-28), Rodney Davis (R-IL-13), Neal Dunn (R-FL-02) Jim Hagedorn (R-MN-01), Vicky Hartzler (R-MO-04), Dusty Johnson (R-SD-AL), Trent Kelly (R-MS-01), Doug LaMalfa (R-CA-01), Roger Marshall (R-KS-01), Tom O'Halleran (D-AZ-01), Tom Rice (R-SC-07), David Rouzer (R-NC-07), Kurt Schrader (D-OR-05), Kim Schrier (D-WA-08), Darren Soto (D-FL-09), Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07), David Scott (D-GA-13), Glenn 'GT' Thompson (R-PA-15), Joe Wilson (R-SC-02), Rob Woodall (R-GA-07), and Ted Yoho (R-FL-03).