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H.R. 2, Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018

Floor Situation

On Thursday, June 21, 2018, the House will consider H.R. 2, the Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018 under a structured rule. This bill was introduced on April 12, 2018 by Rep. Mike Conaway (R-TX) and was referred to the House Committee on Agriculture, which ordered the bill reported, as amended, by a vote of 26-20 on April 18, 2018.


H.R. 2 amends and extends major programs for income support, food and nutrition, land conservation, trade promotion, rural development, research, forestry, horticulture, and other miscellaneous programs administered by the Department of Agriculture (USDA) for five years through 2023. The bill is budget neutral and $112 billion below baseline funding. A summary provided by the Committee on Agriculture can be found here. Specifically, the legislation:

Title I: Commodities

  • Continues the Price Loss Coverage (PLC) and Agricultural Risk Coverage (ARC) programs with modifications, and discontinues the Agricultural Risk Coverage-Individual Coverage option. Producers will have a one-time choice between PLC and ARC, made on a farm-by-farm and commodity-by-commodity basis. A list of reference prices can be found on page 172 of the Committee Report.
  • Seed cotton policy enacted in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 is maintained
  • Establishes an Effective Reference Price for PLC, which is set as the higher of the statutory reference price or 85% of the Olympic average, not to exceed 115% of the statutory reference price.
  • Improves ARC by prioritizing the use of Risk Management Agency yield data, basing payment rates on the physical location of base acres, and establishing a separate irrigated and non-irrigated revenue guarantee in each county.
  • Reauthorizes nonrecourse loans for loan commodities for the 2019 to 2023 crop years and makes adjustments to Extra Long Staple cotton and the formula for upland cotton loan rates.
  • Reauthorizes sugar policy in current law
  • Renames the Margin Protection Program for dairy producers as the Dairy Risk Management Program and authorizes it through 2023. Adjustments to coverage levels and applicable premiums for Tier 1 covered production are made. A list of coverage levels can be found on page 173 of the Committee Report.
  • Modifies the formula used for Class I milk prices and reauthorizes the Dairy Forward Pricing Program, Dairy Indemnity Program, and Dairy Promotion and Research Program through 2023. The Dairy Product Donation program is repealed.
  • The Livestock Indemnity Program is improved and the Livestock Forage Program, the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honey Bees and Farm-Raised Fish, and the Tree Assistance Program are maintained. 
  • The $125,000 payment limit for combined ARC and PLC program assistance is maintained.
  • Defines “qualified pass through entity” to ensure that payment limitations and means testing are applied consistently across similar entity structures.
  • Requires the Secretary to ease regulatory burdens on producers by providing additional options for sharing data across the Department.

Title II: Conservation

  • Reforms the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) to allow for an increased acreage cap of 29 million acres by 2023, while also reducing rental rates, cost-share, and incentive payments.
  • Continues commitment to working lands conservation by merging the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) into the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) while honoring existing CSP contracts.
  • Restores funding for the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP), provides increased funding for the Voluntary Public Access and Habitat Incentive Program and provides mandatory funding for the Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Program.
  • Simplifies the application process, program administration and flexibility for the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP), and removes an impediment to conservation adoption by eliminating SAM/DUNS requirements for conservation and commodity program participants.

Title III: Trade

  • Streamlines the Market Access Program, the Foreign Market Development Program, the Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops Program, and the Emerging Markets Programs into one International Market Development Program with overall funding at $255 million per year.
  • Maintains in-kind food aid as the foundation of the Food for Peace Program and reauthorizes Food for Peace at $2.5 billion annually.
  • Updates food aid labeling requirements to ensure US generosity is appropriately conveyed on packaging
  • Reauthorizes Food for Progress to continue non-emergency development assistance focused on improving agricultural productivity in developing countries.
  • Reauthorizes the John Ogonowski and Doug Bereuter Farmer-to-Farmer Program, reauthorizes the Local and Regional Food Aid Procurement Program, maintains the Cochran Fellowship Program, reauthorizes the Borlaug International Agricultural Science and Technology Fellowship, reauthorizes U.S. contributions to the Global Crop Diversity Trust, and reauthorizes the Bill Emerson Humanitarian Trust.

Title IV: Nutrition

  • Expands the piloted National Accuracy Clearinghouse to create a nationwide Duplicative Enrollment Database.
  • Requires states to collect and submit SNAP participation data to the Duplicative Enrollment Database.
  • Amends the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive program to include a training, evaluation, and information center, and provides $65 million in annual funding by 2023.
  • Excludes up to $500 of the Basic Allowance for Housing for active-duty military families from any calculation of income or resources when determining eligibility to participate in SNAP.
  • Modernizes and increases asset limits to $7,000 for those households without an elderly or disabled members and $12,000 for households with an elderly or disabled member.

·         Allow SNAP applicants to maintain up to $2,000 in a savings account that would not be counted toward the applicant’s assets for purposes of eligibility determination.  

  • Beginning in Fiscal Year 2021, eliminates the treatment of Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents as a targeted subgroup from other work-capable adults. The bill also establishes a work requirement for work-capable adults (aged 18-59), with exemptions for the caretaker of a child, those who are pregnant, and those who are mentally or physically disabled. For at least 20 hoursper week, work-capable individuals must work, participate in a work program, or participate in SNAP Employment and Training.

Title V: Credit

  • Amends the Farm Ownership Loan Program to grant the Secretary enhanced flexibility to allow military experience or agricultural education to qualify for a portion of a 3-year farming or ranching experience requirement to become an eligible borrower. 
  • Reauthorizes the Conservation Loan and Loan Guarantee Program, the Farm Ownership and Operating Loans and the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Individual Development Accounts Program.
  • Reserves Loan Fund Set-Asides and extends the State Agricultural Mediation Programs

Title VI: Rural Development

  • Creates new broadband standards and provides new incentives for borrowers to develop high-speed broadband networks.
  • Reauthorizes mental health services for farmers and ranchers
  • Provides all rural communities access to guaranteed lending programs that finance critical infrastructure projects
  • Provides assistance to farm and ranch organizations to establish association health plans for their members
  • Reauthorizes successful energy programs and adjusts eligibility requirements for the Rural Energy Savings Program, expands project eligibility for biorefinery and biobased product manufacturing assistance, and repeals the Rural Energy Self-Sufficiency Initiative.

Title VII: Research, Extension, and Related Matters

  • Reauthorizes extramural research, extension, and education grants and formula funds for programs administered by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
  • Reauthorizes university research, extension, and education for agricultural activities at 1862, 1890, and 1994 Land-Grant Colleges and Universities.
  • Reauthorizes the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board and the Specialty Crop Committee.
  • Maintains permanent funding of $80 million per year for the Specialty Crop Research Initiative, $30 million per year for the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative, and $20 million per year for the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program.

Title VIII: Forestry

·         Authorizes the U.S. Forest Service to immediately implement tools to reduce the threat of catastrophic wildfire, insect and disease infestation, and damage to municipal watersheds by building upon the previous success of Categorical Exclusions (CEs).

  • Expedites the United States Forest Service’s ability to quickly remove dead trees after wildfires, and authorizes the USFS to implement tools to reduce the threat of catastrophic wildfire, insect and disease infestation, and damage to municipal watersheds.
  • Protects forests through cross-boundary forest management projects by authorizing the State and private forest landscape-scale restoration programs.
  • Promotes conservation on private forests through the Forest Legacy Program and the Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program.

IX: Horticulture

  • Maintains funding for the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program, with funding provided for multi-state projects, while streamlining reporting requirements for State agencies.
  • Authorizes the Farmers’ Market and Local Food Promotion Program to improve and expand direct producer-to-consumer market opportunities including the development of local food system infrastructure.
  • Reauthorizes the National Organic Program and Organic Production and Market Data Initiatives and provides for modernization of organic import documentation, new technology advancements, and stricter enforcement of organic imports.
  • Clarifies the role and authority of State lead agencies in regulating pesticides under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act.

X: Crop Insurance

  • Allows the Risk Management Agency to offer insurance for forage and grazing and harvested grain in the same season for certain crops.
  • Prevents duplication of coverage between certain crop insurance policies and ARC
  • Extends the discount for beginning farms and ranchers from 5 years to 10 years for the purposes of calculating producer-paid premium for Whole Farm Revenue Protection
  • Repeals the Risk Management Education Partnerships Program, the Targeted States Program, and Agricultural Management Assistance, and adjusts funding levels.

XI: Miscellaneous

  • Provides $450 million to enhance USDA’s ability to identify, diagnose and respond to a potential animal disease outbreak. The bill establishes a new National Animal Disease Preparedness and Response Program.
  • Establishes a new U.S.-only vaccine bank with priority for stockpiling Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD) vaccine and provides for the enhancement of the National Animal Health Laboratory Network.
  • Provides $10 million per year for outreach and assistance to socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers and military veterans in agriculture, reauthorizes the Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement to improve the viability and profitability of small, beginning, and socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, codifies the position of Agricultural Youth Organization Coordinator to ensure USDA is focused on promoting young people in agriculture, and creates a commission to study how the United States can be best positioned to help feed 9 billion people by 2050.



The farm bill provides an opportunity for Congress to comprehensively and periodically address agricultural and food issues. Title I of the farm bill is the front line defense of farmers and dairy producers struggling to survive in the face of five years of depressed prices and revenue, and ranchers and livestock producers coping with production losses resulting from natural disasters.  The 2014 farm bill expires on September 30, 2018.

The 2014 farm bill created two new types of income support programs that only trigger when severe market losses occur, Price Loss Coverage (PLC) and Agricultural Risk Coverage (ARC). Producers were given a one-time choice between PLC and ARC, depending on their preference for protection against a decline in either (a) crop prices or (b) crop revenue, respectively. The selection was for the five-year duration of the 2014 farm bill—the 2014 through 2018 crop years. Furthermore, producers could elect ARC at either the county (ARC–CO) or individual farm (ARC–IC) level. PLC and ARC-CO choices could vary across "covered" crops whereas ARC-IC includes all "covered" crops on a farm under a single farm-level revenue guarantee. Participation is free. For both ARC and PLC, payments are decoupled—that is, payments are made on 85% of a crop's historical "base" acres rather than actual production.[1]

The Marketing Assistance Loan (MAL) program—operated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)—provides both a floor price and interim financing for certain commodities—referred to as loan commodities. A participating producer may put a harvested loan crop under a nine-month, nonrecourse loan valued at a statutory commodity loan rate. Nonrecourse means that USDA must accept the forfeited crop pledged as collateral for full payment of an outstanding loan. If local market prices for the crop increase above the loan rate (plus interest), a producer may repay a MAL and reclaim the crop. If market prices remain below the loan rate, then other program options are available to producers, including repayment of the loan at a lower rate, forfeiture of the crop, or taking a loan deficiency payment (LDP) in lieu of a MAL.[2]

The 2014 farm bill made significant changes to the structure of U.S. dairy support programs by repealing the Dairy Product Price Support Program (DPPSP), the Milk Income Loss Contract, and the Dairy Export Incentives Program. Instead, the bill established two new programs—the Margin Protection Program (MPP) and the Dairy Product Donation Program (DPDP). Dairy policy is maintained with some important improvements, including provisions to provide greater coverage levels at lower premium cost with respect to the first five million pounds of production. The former cap on livestock (including dairy) insurance policies available under Federal Crop Insurance remains lifted to allow insurance products to help all dairy producers manage risk. Finally, the calculation of class I milk is adjusted to better enable producers to hedge price risk in the futures market.[3]

Congress reauthorized the sugar program in the 2014 farm bill (P.L. 113-79) with no changes from the version it authorized in the 2008 farm bill (P.L. 110-246) Reforms made in the 2014 farm bill were aimed at achieving budget savings, whereas U.S. sugar policy is designed to operate at zero cost to the taxpayer. The global sugar market is the most distorted agricultural market due to heavily subsidized foreign sugar being dumped on the global market at prices below cost of production. U.S. sugar policy ensures that the combination of domestic production, fulfilling U.S. trade agreements and additional foreign imports do not oversupply the U.S. market,while also assuring that adequate supplies of beet and cane sugar are available to sugar users.[4]

The conservation title of a farm bill generally contains a number of reauthorizations, amendments, and new programs that encourage farmers and ranchers to voluntarily implement resource-conserving practices on private land. Administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), these programs can be grouped into the following categories based on similarities: working land programs, land retirement programs, easement programs, partnership programs, conservation compliance, and other overarching provisions. Most of the farm bill conservation programs are authorized to receive mandatory funding. [5]

Bulk commodities—wheat, rice, coarse grains, oilseeds, cotton, and tobacco—are the leading U.S. agricultural exports. USDA reports that exports of consumer-oriented products—such as dairy products, meats, poultry, live animals, oilseed meals, vegetable oils, fruits, vegetables, and beverages—have also shown steady growth. Leading export markets include China, Canada, Mexico, and the European Union. Together these markets account for about one-half of the total value of U.S. agricultural exports. USDA administers a number of programs aimed at developing overseas markets for U.S. agricultural products and facilitating exports. The "Trade" title of the 2014 farm bill authorized, amended, and repealed existing trade programs.[6]

The Nutrition title of the farm bill typically reauthorizes a number of nutrition or domestic food assistance programs. These include the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations, The Emergency Food Assistance Program, the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, Community Food Projects, and Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program. SNAP is authorized as open-ended mandatory spending and is funded through appropriations laws. As such, amending SNAP eligibility, benefits, or other program rules can have a budgetary impact. At the same time, the availability of appropriated funding also affects SNAP's operation. SNAP's spending is largely driven by program participation, which can fluctuate due to economic conditions and program rules. Approximately 95% of SNAP spending is for the benefits themselves, which are 100% federally funded. Administrative costs of eligibility determination are shared between the states and the federal government. Other SNAP spending includes funds for nutrition education and Employment and Training. [7]

The rural development title of farm bills generally provides assistance for rural business creation and expansion and rural infrastructure along with traditional assistance for housing, electrical generation and transmission, broadband, water and wastewater, and economic and institutional capacity in local communities. In the past several farm bills, policymakers have also supported innovative and alternative business development (e.g., bioenergy, value-added production, local food production) and innovative mechanisms to finance it (e.g., the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program).[8]

Four of the past five farm bills included a separate forestry title. The Forest Service (FS) is housed within the U.S. Department of Agriculture and is the principal federal forest management agency of the United States. FS manages 19% of all U.S. forestlands. FS administers the 193 million acre National Forest System (NFS), which consists of 145 million acres of forestland and 48 million acres of grasslands and woodlands. FS also provides technical and financial assistance—primarily through state forestry agencies—to nonfederal landowners. In addition, FS conducts research to advance the science of forestry and engages in international forestry assistance and research efforts. Many of FS's land management, assistance, and research programs have permanent authorities and receive appropriations annually through the discretionary appropriations process.[9]

Specialty crops—defined as "fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, and horticulture and nursery crops (including floriculture)"—comprise a major part of U.S. agriculture. USDA reports that retail sales of fresh and processed fruits and vegetables for at-home consumption total nearly $100 billion annually. In 2012, about 244,000 farming operations grew more than 350 types of fruit, vegetable, tree nut, flower, nursery, and other horticultural crops. Production is concentrated in California, Florida, Washington, Oregon, North Dakota, and Michigan. Producers in these sectors are not eligible for the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) commodity revenue support programs, but they are eligible for the nutrition, conservation, research, crop insurance, disaster assistance, rural development, and trade titles.[10]

Federal crop insurance is permanently authorized by the Federal Crop Insurance Act as amended (7 U.S.C. 1501 et seq.) but is periodically modified by new farm bill legislation. It makes available subsidized "multiple peril" crop insurance for eligible commodities, which helps producers manage risks associated with a loss in either yield or crop revenue depending on the type of policy selected. Insurable perils include drought, flood, insects or disease outbreaks, and crop-specific revenue shortfalls. The policies are sold and serviced by private insurance companies. Federal support includes paying a portion (an average of 62%) of producer premiums, paying $1.4 billion in annual delivery costs, and sharing underwriting risk with the private insurance companies.


  1. Rep. Steve King (R-IA) – This amendment allows Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) to go into contracts with drainage districts to provide irrigation or water efficiency.
  2. Rep. Bob Gibbs (R-OH) – This amendment expresses a sense of congress encouraging partnerships at the watershed level between nonpoint sources and regulated point sources to advance the goals of the Water Pollution Control Act.
  3. Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA) – This amendment requires the Government Accountability Office(GAO) to establish a pilot program in 9 states to determine whether specific items being purchased with supplemental nutrition assistance program(SNAP) benefits can be collected using existing reporting requirements and whether such reporting requirements can be improved.
  4. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL) – This amendment amends the Nutrition title to allow SNAP users to purchase a multivitamin with their SNAP benefits.
  5. Rep. Jack Bergman (R-MI) – This amendment directs GAO to study the agricultural credit needs of farms, ranches, and related agricultural businesses that are owned or operated by Indian tribes on tribal lands or enrolled members of Indian tribes on Indian allotments. If needs are not being met, report shall include legislative and other recommendations that would result in a system under which the needs are met in an equitable and effective manner.
  6. Rep. Jody Arrington (R-TX) – This amendment modifies the Community Facilities Direct Loan and Guarantee Loan Program and the Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan Program to permit rural hospitals to refinance existing debt.
  7. Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) – This amendment removes the first 1,500 individuals residing on military bases from calculation into population thresholds set for 'rural areas.'
  8. Rep. Bob Latta (R-OH) – This amendment requires the Federal Communications Commission, in consultation with the United States Department of Agriculture, to establish a task force for reviewing the connectivity and technology needs of precision agriculture in the United States.
  9. Rep. Glenn Thompson (R-PA) – This amendment adds Chronic Wasting Disease to Sec.7208, High-Priority Research and Extension Initiatives. 
  10. Rep. Jaime Herrera-Beutler (R-WA) – This amendment directs the payment of a portion of stewardship project revenues to the county in which the stewardship project occurs.
  11. Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) – This amendment authorizes counties to be included in Good Neighbor Authority cooperative agreements and contracts in order to improve forest health and bolster watershed restoration.
  12. Rep. Greg Gianforte (R-MT) – This amendment authorizes expedited salvage operations for areas burned by wildfire to salvage dead trees and reforest to prevent re-burn, provide for the utilization of burned trees, or to provide a funding source for reforestation. Requires a two month environmental assessment for reforestation activities and at least 75% of the burned area be reforested.
  13. Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR) – This amendment requires the Forest Service to consider longterm health of our nation's forests when developing collaborative management plans, and shields agency decision making from certain injunctions on sustainable forest management.
  14. Rep. Don Young (R-AK) – This amendment exempts all National Forests in Alaska from the U.S. Forest Service Roadless Rule.
  15. Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM) – This amendment allows the Village of Santa Clara to purchase land from the United States Forest Service that was formerly part of Fort Bayard Military Reservation.
  16. Rep. Doug LaMalfa (R-CA) – This amendment streamlines the Forest Service application process required to construct broadband infrastructure on federal land.
  17. Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR) – This amendment instructs the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Interior to provide Congress a yearly report tabulating the metrics surrounding wildfire prevention, including the number of acres treated and agency response time.
  18. Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM) – This amendment reauthorizes the Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration Program for another 10 years.
  19. Rep. Scott Tipton (R-CO) – This amendment authorizes the U.S. Forest Service to convey 3.61 acres of Forest Service Land to Dolores County, Colorado for the strict purpose of building a fire station.
  20. Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX) – This amendment establishes Cattle and Carcass Grading Correlation and Training Centers to limit subjectivity and increase the accuracy of grading cattle across the country.


Amendments II

  1. Rep. Foxx (R-NC) – This amendment modernizes and reforms the sugar program by removing barriers to domestic production and implementing market reforms.
  2. Rep. Conaway (R-TX) – This amendment makes technical and conforming changes, in addition to making amendments to titles IV, VI and XI of H.R. 2. These amendments consist of changes to nutrition programs, requiring consultation between USDA and NTIA on broadband loan and grant programs and establishing a food access liaison at USDA.

3.    Rep. McClintock (R-CA) – This amendment phases out agricultural subsidies.

4.    Rep. LaHood (R-IL) – This amendment streamlines the sign up process for Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) by directing the Secretary of Agriculture to change the regulatory requirements from an annual sign up to a “one and done” process for ARC and PLC only.

5.    Rep. Rogers (R-AL) – This amendment amends the Conservation Title to cap the number of CRP acres at 24 million a year.

6.    Rep. Faso (R-NY) – This amendment expands USDA's ability to assess natural resource concerns through enhanced measurement, evaluation, and reporting on conservation program outcomes.

7.    Rep. Fortenberry (R-NE) – This amendment provides sequencing and prioritization for volunteer visits and improves communication and coordination between USDA, USAID and implementing partners. The amendment also establishes a geographically defined crop yield metrics system and an Internet-based resource for data and knowledge sharing among the participants, stakeholders and the public

8.    Rep. McClintock (R-CA) – This amendment amends SNAP work requirements to repeal geographic area waivers to allow states to exempt only 5% of SNAP recipients, set the same hour per week work requirement for married parents as for single parents, exempt parents of children under 3 instead of children under 6, require participants in training programs to go through E-Verify.

9.    Rep. MacArthur (R-NJ) – This amendment ensures that if an individual becomes ineligible to participate in the supplemental nutrition assistance program as a household member due to failure to meet the requirements under subparagraph (B), the remaining household members (including children), shall not become ineligible to apply to participate in the supplemental nutrition assistance program due to such individual’s ineligibility.

10. Rep. Davidson (R-OH) – This amendment instructs USDA to distribute employment and training funds based on actual usage of the program rather than eligibility. Any unused funds would be sent back to the treasury.

11. Rep. Holding (R-NC) – This amendment ends eligibility for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for convicted violent rapists, pedophiles and murderers after enactment into law.

12. Rep. Gonzalez-Colon (R-PR) – This amendment requires the Secretary of Agriculture to conduct a feasibility study on developing a Thrifty Food Plan to calculate the amount of the Nutritional Assistance Program for Puerto Rico.

13. Rep. Faso (R-NY) – This amendment provides states the flexibility to contract out administrative functions of SNAP.

14. Rep. Young (R-AK) – This amendment expands access to traditional foods for native populations first created in Sec. 4033 of PL 113-79.

15. Rep. Gonzalez-Colon (R-PR) – This amendment requires the Secretary of Agriculture to provide an extension of study on comparable access to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance for Puerto Rico.

16. Rep. Biggs (R-AZ) – This amendment repeals the bioenergy subsidy programs established in title IX of the 2002 farm bill.

17. Rep. Russel (R-OK) – This amendment amends the Agricultural Risk Protection act of 2000 to prohibit the Department of Agriculture (USDA) from awarding value-added agricultural product market development grants to support the marketing of beer, wine, distilled spirits, hard cider, or other alcohol products. The amendment also rescinds $8 million of the unobligated funds that were previously provided to USDA for grants.

18. Rep. Turner (R-OH) – This amendment ensures that newly designated 1890 Institution’s base funding is calculated by using the same formula as already established 1890 Institutions.

19. Rep. Stefanik (R-NY) – This amendment adds invasive vegetation to Section 602 of the Healthy Forests Restoration Act.

20. Rep. Cheney (R-WY) – This amendment directs the USFS and DOI to make vacant allotments available to grazing permit or lease holders in the even of a natural disaster, conflict with wildlife, or court-issued injunction. To prevent a court injunction in the event that the federal agency is unable to make a vacant allotment available

21. Rep. Pearce (R-MN) – This amendment establishes a pilot program to demonstrate effective tools and techniques for safeguarding national forests and watersheds.

22. Rep. Stefanik (R-NY) – This amendment prioritizes grants for forest restoration under the Competitive Forestry, Natural Resources, and Environmental Grants Program.

23. Rep. Faso (R-NY) – This amendment improves cooperation with the Forest Service to intercept tree and wood pests and would require a report on the interception of forest pests.

24. Rep. Brat (R-VA) – This amendment establishes transparency and accountability requirements for checkoff programs. It requires that a checkoff board or its employees or agents acting in their official capacity may not engage in any act that may involve a conflict of interest, anti-competitive activity, unfair or deceptive act or practice, or act that may be disparaging to, or in any way negatively portray, another agricultural commodity or product.

25. Rep. Massie (R-KY) – This amendment prohibits federal interference with the interstate traffic of unpasteurized milk and milk products between States that allow the distribution of unpasteurized milk or milk products for direct human consumption.

26. Rep. Costello (R-PA) – This amendment directs the Secretary to designate, among existing USDA staff, a Beginning Farmer and Rancher (BFR) Coordinator in each state, without associated cost.

27. Rep. Noem (R-SC) – This amendment creates a new initiative to allow the United States Department of Agriculture to match funds invested in educational programs or services for Indians.

28. Rep. Roskam (R-IL) – This amendment strengthens prohibitions against animal fighting by ensuring the law applies to all US territories.

29. Rep. Johnson (R-LA) – This amendment Requires the Secretary to consider the totality of conservation measures already in place, or proposed, to mitigate species or habitat loss when determining whether Federal action is likely to jeopardize either.

30. Rep. Hollingsworth (R-IN) – This amendment allows the Secretary of the Interior, in conjunction with the Director of the US Fish and Wildlife Service, to issue depredation permits to livestock farmers authorizing the taking of black vultures otherwise prohibited by law to prevent damage to livestock during calving season.

31. Rep. Banks (R-IN) – This amendment Repeals the final rule issued by the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Secretary of the Army entitled ‘‘Clean Water Rule: Definition of ‘Waters of the United States’’’ (80 Fed. Reg. 37053 (June 29, 2015))


The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates enacting H.R. 2 would increase net direct spending by $3.2 billion over the 2019-2023 period and by $.5 billion over the 2019-2028 period.  Baseline projections incorporate the assumption that many expiring programs continue to operate after their authorizations expire, and the cost of extending those authorizations after 2023 would total $387 billion. CBO also estimates that enacting the bill would increase revenues by $.5 billion over the 2019-2028 period. The 10-year net effect saves $7 million.

Staff Contact

For questions or further information please contact Jake Vreeburg with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 2-1374.


[1] See Farm Bill Primer: ARC and PLC Support Programs

[2] See Farm Bill Primer: The Marketing Assistance Loan Program

[3] See House Report 115-661 at 187.

[4] See Farm Bill Primer: Sugar Program

[5] See Farm Bill Primer: The Conservation Title

[6] See Fall Bill Primer: Trade and Export Promotion Programs

[7] See Farm Bill Primer: SNAP and Other Nutrition Title Programs

[8] See Farm Bill Primer: Rural Development Title Provisions

[9] See Farm Bill Primer: Forestry Title

[10] See Farm Bill Primer: Horticulture Title Provisions

115th Congress