WASHINGTON – Congressman Tom Reed (R-Corning, NY 23) is offering his thoughts on the $12 billion farm relief package being proposed by the Donald Trump administration through the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The aid is intended to provide short term financial assistance struggling farmers as they deal with retaliatory tariffs keeping their products from being shipped overseas.
The tariffs that have been imposed by China, Mexico, and other countries are in direct response to tariffs that have been imposed by President Trump as he tries to “level the playing field” for American business.
Reed said he supports the $12 billion aid package, adding that he also supports the president’s strategy of disrupting international trade in an effort to give the U.S. a better long-term deal.
“This trade policy by the Trump administration is a new, disruptive force, but we recognize as you go down this disruptive path, there are going to be some potential short term consequences to it, and our farming communities are an example of that potential impact,” Reed said. “So having the [$12 billion] relief that the president has put on the table is a recognition of this by the administration and I’m supportive of it. It says to those farmers seeing the negative effects of this trade policy on the short term, that we will give them the relief and stand with them as we go through this.”
Specific details on how the $12 billion will be allocated have not been provided, but Reed said some of that money will go to help dairy farmers and other growers in the 23rd congressional district.
Meanwhile the New York Farm Bureau has said it would prefer the president work to lift the tarrifs that have been imposed, rather than provide short-term relief aid.
“Secretary Perdue has followed up on his word to address the huge impact that this has had on farmers, which is reflected in the size of the relief program. However, in the end, what our farmers are asking for are open markets to sell the quality products they produce. We hope that the trade matter will quickly be resolved because short term relief can only go so far when farmers need to plan for the long term, said David Fisher, New York Farm Bureau President in a statement released earlier this week.