There will be no cuts to the federal crop insurance program as was proposed by the recently passed two-year budget agreement.
Congressional leaders used the highway bill, “Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act,” to find an offset for the $3 billion in cuts that had been proposed for crop insurance. Sens. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) objected to not including the crop insurance cut but failed on a vote of 77-22.
The debate over crop insurance is not over. Legislation has been introduced in both the House and Senate to reform crop insurance. The Environmental Working Group recently said, “Rhetorically, this is a Congress that applauds federal belt tightening, but in practice it hands out billions in taxpayer-funded giveaways to the crop insurance industry.” President Obama signed the five-year highway bill into law last Friday.