WASHINGTON , Jan. 29 -- Rep. Tim Griffin , R- Ark. (2nd CD), issued the following news release: Congressman Tim Griffin (AR-02) issued the following statement after House passage of the Agricultural Act of 2014: "There's no such thing as a perfect piece of legislation, and this farm bill is no exception. But I support the bipartisan agreement because Arkansas's agricultural community is a critical part of our state's economy, accounting for 260,000 jobs and $17 billion in value. Providing it with certainty will promote stability and encourage more growth. Conferees Rick Crawford and John Boozman have worked hard to maximize the reforms and savings in this bill, which repeals or consolidates nearly 100 USDA programs, establishes a new risk-management system to protect farmers who suffer significant losses, and ends direct payments--a significant and historic reform. Overall, this agreement cuts $23 billion in mandatory spending. "The unfortunate news is that, because of President Obama 's lackluster economy and his Administration's aggressive recruiting of enrollees, a record 20 percent of American households were on food stamps in 2013, causing the program's cost to run twice as much as it did only five years ago. The good news is that this agreement will close loopholes in the program, empower states to use mandatory work programs and ensure benefits are not given to illegal immigrants, lottery winners, traditional college students and dead people. "Also regrettable is that this agreement does not address mandatory country-of-origin labeling requirements that could trigger retaliatory tariffs and fails to guarantee American job creators are protected from excessive and overly burdensome regulations imposed under the Grain Inspection Packers and Stockyards Act (GIPSA). I will continue to work with my colleagues to address these issues and protect Arkansas workers whose jobs may be impacted by them." The Agriculture Act of 2014http://agriculture.house.gov/sites/republicans.agriculture.house.gov/files/pdf/legislation/AgriculturalActSummary.pdf reauthorizes and improves livestock disaster assistance, strengthens crop insurance and funds the Payment In Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program for one year. It is supported by many organizations, including: * Agriculture Council of Arkansas * Arkansas Farm Bureau * American Farm Bureau * Arkansas Rice Farmers * USA Rice Federation * American Soybean Association * Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies * Ducks Unlimited * National Alliance of Forest Owners * National Cotton Council TNS 30TacordaCheng-140130-4618925 30TacordaCheng
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