WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, the Agriculture Energy Coalition applauded a bipartisan group of eight members of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry who expressed their strong support for the farm bill energy title programs in a letter to committee chair Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) and ranking member Sen. Debbie Stabenow. The coalition specifically thanked Sens. Joni Ernst (R-IA) and Tina Smith (D-MN) for taking the lead in writing the letter.
The letter states, in part:
“As fellow members of the Senate Agriculture Committee, we feel strongly that the Committee must not forget the value energy title programs bring to rural economies. The title should be renewed and improved, with adequate resources to ensure the programs work as intended.”
The letter further notes that reauthorization of the energy title programs – which represent less than a tenth of 1 percent of spending in the farm bill – can be a catalyst for reviving depressed farm community economies. Since 2009, the programs have helped rural businesses, farms and ranches leverage more than $5 billion in new investment.
Lloyd Ritter, director of the Agriculture Energy Coalition, states:
“We thank the members of the Senate Agriculture Committee for committing their strong, bipartisan support for the energy title programs. These programs support more than 1.5 million U.S. workers who manufacture biobased products and help rural America adopt new technologies for renewable energy economic opportunities. The final farm bill must include an Energy Title, with strong mandatory funding and necessary updates for the vital programs.
“The Coalition thanks Senators Ernst and Smith for their leadership on this statement of support as well as Senators Grassley, Klobuchar, Fischer, Heitkamp, Hoeven and Bennet.”