Along with a coalition of allies, PIA sent joint letters this week to Congress and the administration urging them to protect crop insurance from funding cuts in the Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) budget and appropriations process. The letters were addressed to recently-confirmed Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and the leaders of the House and Senate Budget and Appropriations committees.
Administrations from both parties have tried to cut funding to the crop insurance program using the budget and appropriations process in recent years. Last year, the FY21 budget request recommended an eight percent cut to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and crop insurance specifically would have been cut by $25 billion over the next decade. In 2015, a budget package included a $3 billion cut to the program, but PIA and its allies successfully pushed for a measure to reverse the cuts.
The federal crop insurance program is a highly technical program that relies on the expertise of independent insurance agents. Crop insurance provides our nation’s farmers with the ability to manage their risk and provide a safe, strong, and dependable food supply. Because of the importance of the crop insurance program and the vital role that agents play in maintaining it, PIA opposes any cuts to the program. Despite many changes to leadership makeup of the Agriculture committees, we continue to work with Congress and the new administration to ensure the program remains intact throughout the budget and appropriations process.