Blunt touts Missouri priorities in FY2022 agriculture, energy, and water supply bills
WASHINGTON – Today, United States Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced that several priories in Missouri are being included in the finance bills for agriculture and energy and the development of water for the 2022 fiscal year. The bills were approved by the Appropriations Committee by 25 votes to 5.
“I am delighted that the committee has worked together to prioritize supporting programs and policies that significantly benefit farmers, businesses and communities, especially in rural areas.” Blunt said.“By investing in agricultural research facilities in Missouri, we will help ensure that farmers and ranchers have all the tools they need to feed and power the world. This bill also addresses a major concern among many local officials, families, and small business owners: the critical need to improve the safety and navigability of Missouri’s waterways. By investing in rural broadband as well as water and electricity infrastructure, the bill supports programs that will help stimulate economic growth and improve the quality of life in cities. I will continue to work with my colleagues to ensure these priorities get the funding they need in the final appropriation bill for fiscal year 2022. ”
Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration and related agencies:
• Agronomic research: The bill provides $ 3.6 billion to support agricultural research conducted by the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). This investment will support research, education and extension activities at the University of Missouri, Missouri State University, Northwest Missouri State University, Lincoln University, and the US Department’s ARS facility. Agriculture in Columbia, Missouri.
Agriculture and Food Research Initiative: The bill includes $ 445 million for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, an increase of $ 10 million from fiscal 2021.
Policy Research Centers: The law provides $ 8 million for cooperative policy research agreements. This investment will contribute to the analysis of national and international projections of agricultural markets and the rural economy.
Livestock Genetic Research: The bill includes an additional $ 3 million for ARS to conduct genetic research in livestock.
Missouri River Research: The bill includes additional resources for the ARS to continue research on water resource management in the Missouri River Basin.
• Agricultural Services Agency (FSA): The legislation includes nearly $ 1.2 billion for various agricultural, conservation and emergency loan programs that Missouri farmers and ranchers rely on, an increase of $ 35.4 million from the adopted level for fiscal year 2021. The bill also prohibits the closure of FSA county offices.
• Natural Resources Conservation Service:The bill provides $ 937 million for conservation operations and technical assistance to help farmers, ranchers and private forest owners conserve and protect their lands.
Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations Program: The measure includes $ 198 million for the Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations Program. Additionally, the bill includes $ 10 million for the East Locust Creek reservoir project. Blunt led efforts to secure funding for the East Locust Creek Project to address severe water shortages in north-central Missouri. The East Locust Creek Reservoir service area includes Mercer, Putnam, Schuyler, Grundy, Sullivan, Adair, Livingston, Linn, Macon and Chariton counties.
• Rural development: The legislation provides more than $ 3.56 billion for rural development programs and activities, including infrastructure, community development, rural housing and water supply programs.
Rural Broadband: The bill includes $ 700 million for the ReConnect pilot program. The program targets areas that currently do not have broadband access and includes provisions that prevent overbuilding of existing infrastructure. Over the past two years, Missouri has received nearly $ 200 million in funding through the Blunt-backed program, which is about 20% of all support provided nationwide. The bill also includes $ 60 million for distance learning / telemedicine and broadband grants that will help expand access to modern high-speed internet services in rural areas. Blunt has led efforts to end the digital divide that has left around a third of rural Missourians without broadband access.
Water and power infrastructure: The measure includes nearly $ 1.45 billion for loans from rural water supply and waste programs, $ 450 million for water and waste subsidies, and more than $ 1 , $ 5 billion in grants and loans for rural business and industry programs that promote the growth of small businesses in rural areas.
Goodfellow Relocation: The bill includes $ 24.5 million to support the relocation of Goodfellow’s facility in St. Louis, Missouri.
Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies:
• U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: The legislation provides more than $ 8.9 billion for the Army Corps of Engineers, up $ 1.17 billion from the level adopted for fiscal 2021. The funding will support vital flood control projects and of navigation through Missouri and the country.
• Navigation and Ecosystem Sustainability Program (PNES): The bill includes $ 45.1 million for construction funds for the NESP, which will upgrade seven locks and dams on the headwaters of the Mississippi.
• Lower Missouri Basin Flood Control Feasibility Studies: Blunt has secured funding for flood control feasibility studies in Chariton County, Holt County and the City of Jefferson, which will advance projects needed to reduce flood risk.
• Missouri River Bank Stabilization and Navigation Program: The law provides $ 47.4 million for operations and maintenance activities, including the maintenance of structures critical to navigation.
• Inland Waterways Trust Fund: The bill makes full use of the income from the Inland Waterways Trust Fund. The bill also ensures that the resources that inland waterway operators invest in the Inland Waterways Trust Fund are used for the construction and modernization of locks and dams in our country.
• Mississippi River and Tributaries Project:The legislation includes $ 380 million for the Mississippi River and Tributaries Project, providing vital funding for the Corps to fulfill its flood control and navigation missions.
• Delta Regional Authority (DRA): The bill provides $ 30.1 million for the DRA with a focus on infrastructure development in rural areas, including $ 15 million for flood control, public infrastructure and improved transportation. . The DRA provides infrastructure, health care, and economic development assistance to 29 counties in southeast Missouri.
• Small ports: The legislation provides $ 65 million for the dredging of small harbors, including those in Missouri located on the Mississippi River.