Nov. 6, 2003
Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2004
(At the request of Mr. DASCHLE, the following statement was ordered to be printed in the RECORD.)
Mr. KERRY. Mr. President, today I submit into the RECORD a statement regarding my position on an amendment offered by Senators LEAHY and SNOWE to the agriculture appropriations bill. Their bipartisan amendment was aimed at preventing the USDA from using funds from working lands incentive programs to pay for the technical assistance costs of the Conservation Reserve Program. Although I supported the amendment from Senators LEAHY and SNOWE, I believe it underscores the urgent need to prioritize conservation funding and ensure that all conservation programs authorized in the 2002 farm bill, from the Grassland Reserve Program to the Conservation Reserve Program, receive full funding. Robbing one important program to pay for another does not help us achieve our collective goal of improving conservation on farmlands and in rural communities.