Last month, Farm Aid joined 578 organizations, rural businesses, and local governments in opposing the elimination of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development mission area and Under Secretary.
For more than 20 years, Rural Development has played a critical role in supporting rural communities nationwide through the development and expansion of businesses, the building of rural housing, water, electric, telecommunications and other infrastructure and by fostering new economic opportunities throughout rural America. Thousands of American farmers and ranchers have benefited from USDA Rural Development programs like the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program, Value Added Producer Grants, Rural Cooperative Development Grant Program or the Community Facilities Direct Loan & Grant Program.
As we told Congress, by eliminating the position of the Rural Development Under Secretary, Secretary Perdue is removing the most significant rural advocate at USDA and a critical rural spokesperson in the federal government. Rural America stands to suffer as a result. We hope Congress will urge President Trump’s Administration to reconsider this drastic move.
Read the letter below.