Money spent on federal farm programs is frequently questioned by federal lawmakers and the non-farming public while farm programs are expected to take more fire as budget talks resume in Washington D.C.
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says members of Congress might be surprised at how little is actually spent on farm programs.
Vilsack says you could do away with all ag programs and that won’t solve the budget problems. High farm income also makes the programs a target.
He’s announcing a new agreement with the national Council on Foundations. He says it’s a unique effort that will encourage foundations to leverage private capital to invest in rural communities and help create jobs in rural areas.
Vilsack says as the government makes decisions about community facilities such as building a hospital or fire station, they can leverage the resources and get more done.
Vilsack is a former Iowa governor.