Neugebauer Hails Final Passage of Funding for Troops, Drought Relief - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

5/25/07

Neugebauer Hails Final Passage of Funding for Troops, Drought Relief

Congressman Randy Neugebauer hailed the House passage of important legislation that will fund the War on Terror and provide drought relief for America's farmers.   

"It is unfortunate that it took 108 days for some in Congress to end the political statements and finally decide to back a responsible bill that funds our troops and establishes benchmarks for success," said Neugebauer. "With this legislation, the troops will now have the resources they need to continue to fight and make progress in the War on Terror.  This funding gives our new strategy in Iraq a chance to work."    

An amendment to the bill also passed the House on Thursday that addresses the devastating drought that has wiped out crop production across the country over the past two years.    

"Our nation's agriculture producers work hard each year to provide Americans with an affordable and abundant supply of food and fiber," said Neugebauer. "In some years, however, adverse weather conditions prove too much to overcome.  Passing this legislation has been a long process, but I am pleased that Congress has found a way to get much needed relief to the farmers who have suffered from this drought."

Under this legislation, H.R. 2206, producers would be able to choose to be compensated for either 2005 or 2006 crop losses (but not both) as long as they purchased crop insurance for that year.  Eligible farmers must have suffered a 35 percent loss to apply for assistance, and the payment would be 42 percent of the price.  Finally, the combination of income from crop receipts, crop insurance, and disaster assistance could not exceed 95 percent of what the value of the crop would have been without a loss. Assistance is also provided for livestock producers.

The Senate is expected to vote on the combined legislation Friday, which will clear the way for President Bush to sign the bill into law.

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