Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Roger Marshall, M.D. led a letter with Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-TX-19) to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) expressing their concerns about the USDA’s requirements for the Emergency Relief Program (ERP).
USDA’s 2022 ERP requirements are misguided and losing sight of the relief program’s intent outlined by Congress when it was created. The Biden Administration’s USDA made requirements that have nothing to do with helping farmers deal with natural disasters. In fact, by the USDA attaching excessive conditions to receive aid, this federal relief program could force farmers to wait even longer for assistance or completely jeopardize their ability to access the program.
“American producers have experienced significant losses, and the Administration has taken an approach that does not reflect Congressional intent. The current program does not provide needed assistance to full-time farm families that suffered the deepest losses, and in short, it misallocates limited but badly needed assistance,” the Members said in their letter.
“While this program is already unnecessarily delayed, it is still imperative that USDA depart from its current path because of the major problems raised by producers and Congress. USDA needs to follow the law and Congressional intent to address the crop losses of our farm families without the pay limits and without preferences that are not authorized by the statute,” the Members continued.
“We strongly request the USDA abandon this current program and implement the framework of 2021 ERP Phase 1 as quickly as possible,” the Members concluded.
You may click HERE to read the full letter.
Senator Marshall was joined in the letter by Senators Tommy Tuberville, Deb Fischer, Pete Ricketts, Cindy Hyde-Smith, James Lankford, John Cornyn, Ted Cruz, and Representatives Ronny Jackson, August Pfluger, Frank Lucas, Scott Franklin, Jake LaTurner, Jake Ellzey, Tracey Mann, Mike Ezell, Stephanie Bice, Pete Sessions, Ralph Norman, Dan Crenshaw Nathaniel Moran, Michael Guest, Lance Gooden, Dan Newhouse, Keith Self, Julia Letlow, James Baird, Troy Nehls, Byron Donalds, John Rose, Adrian Smith, Barry Moore, Morgan Luttrell, Dusty Johnson, Brian Babin, Rick Allen, Cliff Bentz, Michael McCaul, Rick Crawford, Don Bacon, Russell Fry, Mike Flood, Mark Alford, Brad Finstad, Kat Cammack, Randy Weber, Michelle Fischbach, John Moolenaar, Wesley Hunt, Michael Cloud, John Carter, W. Gregory Steube, Mike Kelly, Ron Estes, Kay Granger, Virginia Foxx, Michael Burgess, David Rouzer, Roger Williams, Chip Roy, Beth Van Duyne, Pat Fallon, Lauren Boebert, Tony Gonzales, and Monica De La Cruz.
In March of 2023, Senator Marshall and Representative Arrington led a letter to the USDA criticizing the department for its ERP Phase II rollout and urging the department to build on the successes of ERP Phase I. You may click HERE to read more about Senator Marshall’s March 2023 letter.