U. S. Rep. Langworthy offers update on Farm Bill

U.S. Rep. Nick Langworthy announced his success in securing numerous policy priorities in the House Committee on Agriculture’s Farm, Food, and National Security Act of 2024, known as the Farm Bill.

As a member of the committee, Langworthy, of state Congressional District 23, worked to include pieces of legislation he had previously introduced to benefit farmers and rural communities in Western New York and the Southern Tier. In addition to supporting our critical dairy farms and burgeoning maple syrup industry, he has also made workforce development and rural healthcare top priorities, and this Farm Bill has been an important vehicle for advancing those initiatives.

“I’m proud to have fought to ensure that this year’s Farm Bill will reflect the needs of rural communities in Western New York and the Southern Tier,”said Congressman Langworthy. “This Farm Bill is the result of the shared wisdom and collaboration with our hardworking farmers and producers and will leave a major impact on our region by allowing opportunities for local agriculture to grow and supporting the future success of rural economies. I want to thank Chairman (Glenn “GT“) Thompson for allowing New York’s 23rd District to stamp our priorities on this legislation and for his steadfast leadership in delivering a strong Farm Bill for the American people.”

The Farm Bill is a comprehensive piece of legislation passed roughly every five years that sets national agriculture, nutrition, conservation, and forestry policy. It includes provisions for crop subsidies, rural development, conservation, nutrition assistance programs like SNAP, and more. The bill aims to support farmers, ensure food security, promote sustainable agriculture, and allow our nation to compete on the world stage.

Pieces of legislation sponsored by Congressman Langworthy included in the House’s base text of the Farm Bill are:

— H.R. 1756, the Dairy Pricing Opportunity Act, to authorize mandatory reporting of cost and yield information from dairy processors. This will add transparency to dairy pricing, reducing the risk of unfair fluctuations and ensuring that dairy farmers aren’t cheated out of their hard-earned income. It also includes a provision that will revert the dairy pricing method to a previous system, changed by the 2018 Farm Bill, to benefit dairy farmers.

— H.R. 7015, the Creating Access to Rural Employment and Education for Resilience and Success (CAREERS) Act, to allocate funds within the Rural Innovation Stronger Economy (RISE) Grant Program to support career pathway programs or industry or sector partnerships in key industry sectors, including public utilities, conservation, health care, child care, manufacturing, agribusiness, and others. This provision aims to address the skills gap and workforce shortage in rural communities.

— H.R. 7667, the Making Agricultural Products Locally Essential (MAPLE) Act, to add maple syrup to the list of eligible products under the Seniors Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP), which would both provide a new market for maple syrup and would allow seniors increased access to nutritious, locally sourced maple syrup products.

— H.R. 5308, the Rural Telehealth and Education Enhancement Act, to reauthorize the Distance Learning and Telemedicine Program (DLT) at the USDA, which allocates grants to assist rural communities in acquiring the essential technology and training needed to establish connections between educational and medical experts, students, teachers, and patients residing in rural areas. New York’s 23rd District has benefitted from this program, previously utilizing funds to combat the opioid crisis and train first responders.

— H.R. 3512, the Supporting All Producers (SAP) Act, requires the USDA to consult with maple syrup producers on where to focus annual research and education priorities under the Acer Access and Development Program. This program is a competitive grant program for research and education related to maple syrup production and the industry as a whole.

All of the included bills sponsored by Congressman Langworthy have bipartisan support. The Congressman previously hosted a Farm Bill Listening Session with House Agriculture Committee Chairman Thompson in Portland, attended by more than a hundred constituents.

The Farm Bill process will continue with a full committee markup on May 23 and 24, 2024.

Langworthy represents the 23rd Congressional District of New York, including Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben Counties, and parts of Erie County.


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