Brace yourselves: There might actually be a full, five-year farm bill on the horizon.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) have both expressed a desire to see the bill through their respective chamber floors by the end of May so that legislators can shift their attention to other issues.
House: Still Focused On SNAP Cuts
The House Agriculture Committee approved a $940 billion farm bill on Wednesday, a day after the Senate Agriculture Committee passed its $955 billion version.
It would cut $40 billion from the agriculture budget over the next decade, with about half of those savings coming from a $2.5 billion annual cut to programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which is commonly known as food stamps.
Senate: More Of The Same
Meanwhile, the Senate’s bill — virtually unchanged from the one passed during the last legislative session — saves $23 billion over the next decade, mostly by consolidating agricultural programs.
Both bills eliminate direct payments to farmers, which will save about $5 billion annually.
Proposed Democratic amendments to restore SNAP funds failed to pass the House committee.