Dec 11 2018
Legislation Gives Mississippi Farmers Certainty, Includes Wicker’s Precision Agriculture Legislation
WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., today voted for the 2018 Farm Bill Conference Report, which will reauthorize federal agriculture and nutrition programs for five years. The final bill includes Wicker’s “Precision Agriculture Connectivity Act,” which tasks the Department of Agriculture and the Federal Communications Commission with making broadband accessible to 95 percent of cropland and ranchland by 2025.
“Passage of this Farm Bill provides our farmers relief, certainty, and the tools to continue feeding the world,” Wicker said. “This legislation will help Mississippi farmers who have suffered this year because of unfair foreign trade practices abroad and difficult weather here at home. I am pleased this bill also prioritizes access to broadband by including my precision agriculture legislation. Farmers and ranchers need broadband access to manage their crops more efficiently through new internet-based technologies.”
Among other provisions, the 2018 Farm Bill Conference Report will:
- Reauthorize and improve farm safety net programs, including crop insurance, price loss coverage, agriculture risk coverage, commodity loans, dairy margin coverage, and livestock disaster programs;
- Provide an increase of over $600 million in funding for land grant universities, research, extension, and education projects;
- Invests in cost-share and incentive-based programs to help farmers improve soil, water, and other natural resources;
- Provide $300 million in funding for animal disease prevention and management efforts;
- Fund rural health projects to help Americans struggling with opioid addiction and other substance abuse disorders; and
- Expand broadband access in rural America.