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Successful Farming: USDA budget proposal trims conservation, crop insurance


Politically powerful farm groups are pushing back on President Donald Trump’s proposal to sharply cut federal conservation programs — considered a key part of Iowa’s water-quality efforts — and crop insurance, Successful Farming reported.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s proposed budget would ban any general sign-up for the popular Conservation Reserve Program, which pays farmers to set aside crop acres for habitat, through 2020. It would eliminate the Regional Conservation Partnership Program created in 2014, which creates public-private partnerships in conservation and also has been seen as a key to water efforts in Iowa.

There would be no new enrollments in the Conservation Stewardship Program, and many rural development programs would be scrapped.

The budget would save $6 billion on land stewardship expenses, the USDA said. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue explained the changes

The politically powerful agricultural groups opposed the changes, U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley noted: “The president proposes, and Congress disposes.”

Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall said the White House plan, which also eliminates an array of rural development programs, “fails agriculture and rural America.” 

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