WASHINGTON D.C. (KAMR/KCIT) — Officials with the office of US Rep. Ronny Jackson R-Texas, District 13 said that Jackson recently sent a letter to the US Secretary of Agriculture, calling on the United States Department of Agriculture to release more information on its plan to continue to implement various relief programs.
According to a news release from Jackson’s office, Jackson’s letter is calling on Tom Vilsack, the secretary of agriculture, to “provide transparency on (the USDA’s) plan to implement Phase 2 of the Emergency Relief Progam and the Emergency Livestock Relief Program, both of which will provide critical relief for the agriculture industry.”
Officials said in the release that this comes after Congress authorized emergency relief funding for production losses in 2020 and 2021. Jackson’s team claims that while the USDA used existing producer data to provide emergency payments through phase one, there has been no timeline or plan for phase two distribution.
“Americans continue to face historic inflation and supply chain issues, which has led to rising costs in nearly every aspect of life—our farmers and ranchers are no exception to these struggles,” Jackson said. “Last year, Texas farmers and ranchers saw significant agriculture losses of over $600 million due to Winter Storm Uri. The damage from storms and natural disasters in 2020 and 2021, combined with soaring input costs and devastating labor shortages, have left many farmers and ranchers helpless. These hard-working individuals, many of whom I represent in TX-13, deserve answers from the USDA on its plan to distribute the remaining disaster funds through Phase 2. The Biden Administration must ensure America’s farmers and ranchers get the resources and support they need to continue to feed, fuel and clothe the world.”
The letter sent to Secretary Vilsack, also signed by fellow members of the US House of Representatives including US Rep. Jodey Arrington R-Texas District 19, US Rep. Dan Crenshaw R-Texas District Two and US Rep. Mayra Flores R-Texas District 34, can be found here.