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Ag Provisions in the COVID-19 Stimulus Package

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“We’ve agreed to a package of nearly $900 billion. It is packed with targeted policies that help struggling Americans who’ve already waited entirely too long.”

That was from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-KY, on Sunday after Congress and the White House reached agreement on a new coronavirus stimulus package.

Senate Ag Committee Chairman Pat Roberts from Kansas told Agri-Pulse that the aid package would include more than $13 billion in agriculture spending. The deal also includes $7 billion to expand broadband access.

For small businesses, McConnell says, “This bill will send more than $280 billion to reopen PPP (Paycheck Protection Program) for a targeted second round.”

The bill provides an estimated $5 billion for supplemental $20 per acre payments to all row crop producers and an estimated $225 million for supplemental payments to producers of specialty crops if they lost their crop in 2019. It also provides up to $3 billion for supplemental payments to cattle producers, contract growers of livestock and poultry, dairy farmers, and producers who were forced to euthanize livestock or poultry due to COVID crisis. More details of the ag provisions can be found here.

McConnell added that this package will renew and extend a number of additional important federal benefits that have helped families stay afloat.

“Across all kinds of families in all kinds of situations, this is been a difficult time across the board. So, at the particular request and emphasis of President Trump and his administration, our agreement will provide another round of direct impact payments to help households make ends meet and continue our economic recovery.”

Those direct payments will be $600 per individual.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-CA, said, “It is a good bipartisan bill. It is different from bills that had been proposed on the Senate side by the Republican leader. It does things that his bill never did and that is it addresses the food needs of the American people. Maybe 15 million children are food insecure in our country and adults as well.”

The bill will also fund the government for the next year.