WASHINGTON- House Agriculture Committee Chairman David Scott issued the following statement in support of the American Rescue Plan Act:
I rise in support of the bill, which provides relief for hungry people and for our agricultural producers, including $5 billion tailored to assist those Black, Hispanic, Native American, and other farmers of color who did not proportionately benefit from the tens of billions of dollars in COVID relief paid out to farmers last year.
As the first African American Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, I could not be prouder of the monumental step we are taking here today to correct this long-documented history of discrimination.
This bill also supports America’s families, and particularly our children, by extending the 15% increase in SNAP benefits for three months, providing nutrition assistance for U.S. territories without SNAP, and boosting the Commodity Supplemental Food Program for seniors who have had to bear the brunt of higher food costs.
It supports states with more administrative funding to process SNAP applications, and promotes further development of technology, such as SNAP online purchasing.
This bill invests $3.6 billion to help us make our food supply chain more resilient, including by providing protective equipment for food and agricultural workers.
It also provides $500 million for community facilities grants to assist our rural communities in the fight against COVID-19.
And we also offset $100 million in overtime costs for small meat and poultry processors who continue to grapple with COVID-related backlogs.
This package has the support of a broad alliance that includes nutrition advocates like Bread for the World and Feeding America, farm groups including the American Farm Bureau Federation and the National Black Farmers Association, and companies like General Mills and Cargill and will help us to continue to fight this pandemic.
I urge my colleagues to vote yes and I yield back.