Senate Draft of the Farm Bill Includes FMD Bank, But Lacks Funding

Senate Draft of the Farm Bill Includes FMD Bank, But Lacks Funding

As expected, the leaders of the Senate Agriculture Committee relapsed their draft 2018 Farm Bill on Friday afternoon. According to Committee Chair Sen. Pat Roberts and Ranking member Sen. Debbie Stabenow, the bipartisan draft will provide a new level of certainty and predictably to support farmers and ranchers across the country.

The Livestock Subtitle of the bill creates a National Animal Vaccine and Veterinary Countermeasures bank. The draft directs the Secretary of Agriculture to make the maintenance Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) vaccine stockpile a priority.

However, no funds were earmarked for the new vaccine bank. The House of Representatives draft bill included a one-year funding amount of $150 million,

The full committee will consider the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 on June 13.

It is anticipated that Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell will place the bill on the Senate calendar prior to the 4th of July break

A date has yet to be set by House of Representative leaders to reconsider the farm bill that was defeated in May. House Speaker Paul Ryan earlier set a July 22, 2018 deadline for the passage of the House bill.

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