Representative Ronny Jackson announced Tuesday, July 27, that the scope of a large disaster relief bill, H.R. 267, will assist the agriculture community with natural disaster recovery.
The policy will include the recent winter storms in Texas, and droughts and is especially instrumental for Texas cotton producers.
“At the beginning of this year, the Lone Star State endured a disastrous winter storm, and the agriculture industry suffered many of its consequences," said Congressman Pete Sessions. "The food supply chain is a delicate ecosystem that requires our attention. The RESTORE Act will deliver disaster aid to the men and women who toil, day in and day out, to ensure a steady food supply for the American people. I applaud Congressmen Ronny Jackson (TX-13) and Henry Cuellar (TX-28) for going to bat for our great Texan producers.”
25 News' Caleb Chevalier has been covering the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and recent weather on Central Texas farmers. For hay farmers and Central Texas vineyards, it wasn't February's Winter Storm but unusual wet weather earlier this summer that set production back.
Other Central Texas farmers, like one McLennan County dairy farm, were actually able to meet the community's demand during the pandemic and February's winter storm; stepping up when commercial suppliers were unable to get their trucks to stores.
“The ag community has been through a lot in the last year due to market turmoil caused by COVID-19 and disastrous weather events," said Congressman Ronny Jackson. "I am committed to being a part of the solution so we can make sure our farmers and ranchers emerge from these setbacks stronger than ever before. I thank Chairman Scott and Ranking Member Thompson for their efforts to include my legislative text in the larger disaster relief bill, and I look forward to seeing this process through to it becoming law. Congressman Cuellar has been an outstanding partner to work with and I thank him for joining me in support of Texas agriculture.”
Under the policy, The Secretary of Agriculture will be making payments for expenses related to crop losses.
The coverage includes losses due to high winds or derechos, polar vortexes, losses to dairy cooperatives due to power outages or curtailments, hailstorms, freeze, drought losses in 2020 and 2021, and other eligible losses defined in the bill.
"Whether it was the winter storm, hurricanes, flooding, or ongoing drought conditions, Texas agricultural producers are in desperate need of assistance to keep them operating," said Texas Farm Bureau President Russell Boening.