The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee today approved the Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies fiscal year 2014 funding legislation that totals $20.93 billion, which is $420 million above the fiscal year 2013 enacted level.
The bill funds the Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration, and
provides critical investments in programs that will directly impact public health and safety,
including nutrition programs, housing and water programs, agricultural research, food and drug safety, and international food assistance.
U.S. Senator Mark Pryor (D-Ark.), Chairman of the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee, issued the following statement:
"As a Senator from Arkansas and Chairman of the Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee, I fight hard to promote programs that strengthen rural America. That's why I was proud to write a bill that makes smart investments in rural communities and supports our farmers and producers. Agriculture is a huge economic engine, and we need to support the millions of men and women who feed and clothe our nation."
U.S. Senator Barbara A Mikulski (D-Md.), Chairwoman of the Appropriations Committee, issued the following statement:
"I want to commend Senators Pryor and Blunt for their bipartisan cooperation on this important bill. The Agriculture bill funds the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the gold standard in upholding drug, device, and food safety. This is smart funding for a stronger economy and safer country. In recent years, we've increased the FDA's responsibility to ensure the safety of our food supply. And in this increasingly global market, we've relied on the FDA more than ever to make sure the drugs and medical devices we depend upon are safe and effective. We've also asked the FDA in recent years to help protect Americans from unsafe tobacco products. With all these increased responsibilities, must come increased resources, and we do that by increasing funding for the FDA by $96 million for a total of $2.56 billion for fiscal year 2014."
The bill also makes important reforms in order to streamline and make programs more effective. The bill provides the Administration with additional flexibility to implement developmental assistance around the world, while at the same time ensuring that American farmers and shippers continue to be directly involved in providing international food assistance. Multiple research programs are also streamlined in order to make their administration and outcomes more efficient and effective, and a number of additional programs were eliminated. Highlights of the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and