WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Senator Roy
Blunt (Mo.), a member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural
Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies, announced that
the committee-approved fiscal year 2020 agriculture funding bill includes
several Missouri priorities.
supports hundreds of thousands of jobs and contributes billions of dollars to
our economy every year,” said Blunt. “With world food demand expected to
double in the next 30 to 40 years, we have an incredible opportunity ahead of
us if we have the right policies in place to take advantage of it. That’s why
I’m glad this bill makes important investments to support Missouri’s
world-class plant and animal research institutions, which play an important
role in keeping our farmers and producers on the cutting edge of innovation.
The bill also funds programs that farmers, ranchers, and landowners rely upon
to help overcome hardships caused by flooding, extreme weather, and market
uncertainty. Finally, the legislation prioritizes resources to move us closer
to ending the digital divide, which will improve the quality of life and
enhance economic opportunities in rural communities. I’ll keep working to
ensure the men and women who drive our agriculture industry have the tools they
need to continue leading the way in a global economy.”
Priorities Funded in the Bill:
- Agricultural Research – The bill provides $3.17 billion to support
agricultural research conducted by the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and
the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). This investment will
support research, education, and extension activities at the University of
Missouri, Missouri State University, Northwest Missouri State University,
Lincoln University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s ARS facility in
- Agriculture and Food Research Initiative: The bill includes $425
million for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, a $10 million
increase over FY2019.
- Policy Research Centers: The legislation provides $8 million for policy
research cooperative agreements, an increase of $3 million over
FY2019. This investment will assist with the analysis of national and
international projections of agricultural markets and the rural economy.
- Building and Facilities: The measure includes $25 million for the
construction of a new plant bioscience lab at the University of Missouri.o
NIFA and Economic Research Service (ERS): The legislation provides
$25 million to fully fund the relocation efforts of NIFA and ERS to the Kansas
City region. In a recent Kansas City Star op-ed,
Blunt outlined his support for the move.
- Farm Service Agency (FSA): The bill includes nearly $1.13 billion
for various farm, conservation, and emergency loan programs that Missouri
farmers and ranchers rely upon. The bill also prohibits the closure of FSA
- Natural Resources Conservation Service: The legislation provides
$835 million for conservation operations and technical assistance, an increase
of $15 million over FY2019, to help farmers, ranchers, and private forest
landowners conserve and protect their land.
- Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations Program: The measure includes
$175 million for the Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations Program, a $25
million increase from FY2019. Additionally, the bill includes $11 million
for the East Locust Creek Reservoir Project, which will provide water to rural
- Rural Development: The legislation provides over $3 billion for
Rural Development programs and activities, including infrastructure, community
development, rural housing, and water programs.
- Rural Broadband: The bill includes $6.94 billion for rural electric
and telephone infrastructure loans and $64 million for Distance
Learning/Telemedicine and Broadband grants that will help expand access to
modern, high-speed internet services in rural areas.
- Food & Drug Administration: The bill includes $5
million for Animal Feed Ingredient Reviews at the Center for Veterinary