U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly announced today that he will support the nomination of Sonny Perdue to be Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Donnelly questioned Perdue at the Senate Agriculture Committee hearing last week and received commitments from Perdue that the Department of Agriculture would continue to be a partner in economic development for rural communities, including providing access to broadband and expanding market opportunities for farmers. Donnelly also secured Perdue’s assurance that USDA will continue efforts to assist Hoosiers in rural communities in responding to the opioid abuse and heroin use epidemics.
Donnelly said, “Indiana’s farmers deserve an Agriculture Secretary who will respect their hard work and look out for their interests. That means proving broadband access, improving conservation programs, and expanding market opportunities by supporting the Renewable Fuel Standard, eliminating trade barriers in places like China, and promoting value added products like the Organic Program, locally-grown food, and bio-based products. After discussing these issues with Sonny Perdue, and receiving a commitment that he will use his time at USDA to maintain these priorities and help combat the opioid abuse epidemic, I will support his nomination.”