Farm subsidies, including conservation programs, are being targeted in the federal budget battles. Conservation programs already absorbed $500 million in cuts in the 2011 budget and the House budget for 2012 calls for more, The Washington Post
An Obama administration push to spread those cuts to the wealthiest farms also is gaining traction, and the House budget calls for $30 billion in cuts for farm subsidies over the next 10 years. National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition’s Ferd Hoefner said, “There is a growing feeling that [Congress] must find a way to make sure that the cuts affect everyone, to make sure the mega-producers are not the ones let off the hook this time around,” the Post reported.
Corporate farms have been able to work around such cuts in the past by adding a partner or two that could then apply for separate subsidies to recoup what they lost. Congress is working to close off that option.
An Agriculture Department study showed that farms with the highest profits receive the highest levels of subsidies. Farms with an annual income of $210,000 receive an average of $30,000 or more, those earning $110,368 receive $10,000 to $29,999, and those making $70,117 get between $1,000 and $9,999, the Post reported.
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