Democrats pushed President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion economic stimulus package through the House early Saturday despite progressives' fears about the future of a minimum-wage increase that's included in the measure.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says addressing the COVID-19 pandemic remains top of mind as he returns to USDA, but he also will be addressing climate policy, workforce issues and other matters in the early days of his tenure.
Advocates for minority farmers say historical discrimination justifies providing payments totaling 120% of debt held by “socially disadvantaged” farmers, as approved by the House Agriculture Committee in its $16.1 billion COVID relief package, part of a larger $1.9 trillion relief bill to be considered by the full House of Representatives.
The new chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, Georgia Rep. David Scott, passed his first test as Democrats stuck together Wednesday night to advance their piece of a sweeping $1.9 trillion stimulus package.
Agriculture stimulus provisions released by Democrats on Tuesday would pay off minority farmers' USDA loans and provide $4 billion for purchasing commodities and providing pandemic-related assistance to processors and other parts of the food supply chain.
House committees begin voting starting today on the first provisions in the massive $1.9 trillion coronavirus aid package President Joe Biden is pushing to pass. The House Agriculture Committee is scheduled to meet Wednesday to approve its portion of the package.