Bill introduced in U.S. Senate aims to rein in USDA spending

A new bill in the U.S. Senate aims to reduce wasteful spending by USDA.

Iowa Republican Chuck Grassley says the USDA Spending Accountability Act that he introduced this week along with Indiana Republican Mike Braun and Kansas Republican Roger Marshall would limit the disbursal of funds through USDA’s Commodity Credit Corporation to be permitted only when authorized by Congress.

“Over the past few years the secretaries of agriculture, both Republican and Democrat, have used excess funds in the CCC for their own agenda.”

He calls the program one of the costliest tools in the farm safety net.

“There are many reasons to rein in the authority. Importantly, it will stop the USDA from undermining the role of Congress in writing the upcoming farm bill.”

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack has defended USDA’s use of the CCC, saying during a House subcommittee hearing in March that Congress has given his department the capacity to use the funds.

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