President releases budget with similar USDA expenditures

Published on: Apr 10, 2013

In his budget request sent to Congress April 10, President Barack Obama proposed roughly the same amount of discretionary funding as in 2012, at $22.6 billion.

His budget calls for $37.8 billion in cuts over 10 years by eliminating direct farm payments, decreasing crop insurance subsidies and targeting conservation programs.

Eliminating the direct farm programs and targeting conservation programs have been easy targets for budgetary reforms from congressional members, but the crop insurance subsidies will be the harder sell on Capitol Hill and farm groups who oppose changes.

In a fact sheet from the White House, the proposal didn't specific how crop insurance changes would be implemented, but had a chart which showed how the premium subsidy has gone up considerable, especially since 2006.  

The President's Budget also invests $4 billion in renewable and clean energy and environmental improvements.

The blueprint also calls for increased funding for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative to $383 million and targets areas that are key to American scientific leadership: human nutrition and obesity, food safety, bioenergy, sustainable agriculture, and climate change.

Obama did request nearly $300 million less than last year for the budget at the Environmental Protection Agency with a budget of $8.153 billion.

The budget includes $60 million for E-Enterprise, an initiative that will enable EPA to begin developing tools and expanding systems designed to reduce the reporting burden and provide EPA and state regulators with easier access to and use of environmental data.

EPA is proposing $176.5 million for the agency’s work with partners and stakeholders to provide information and tools to cut greenhouse gas emissions. These funds will support reducing emissions in the U.S. and abroad through careful, cost-effective rulemaking and voluntary programs that focus on the largest entities while also encouraging businesses and consumers to limit unnecessary greenhouse gas emissions.

EPA is requesting an increase of $15 million in Clean Water Act Section 106 Water Pollution Control grant funding to support states, interstate agencies and tribes that commit to strengthening their nutrient management efforts.