Like many American farmers, U-S Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack is impatiently waiting for Congress to pass a new Farm Bill.
The big sticking point is how much to cut from nutrition assistance programs. Today, Vilsack appeared on Iowa Public Television's "iowa press" and said there are many misconceptions about the snap program - particularly about the people who benefit from it. "People just do not understand what SNAP does. If you're a senior citizen and you have a very small Social Security check you've got to choose between prescription drugs, heat, rent and food. If you're a struggling family in a rural area you're spending 36% of your income on food and you need a little help. If you're a person with a serious disability it's probably not likely that you're going to have too many employment opportunities. And if you're already in the workforce, you're working a part-time or full-time job you're doing everything you can to take care of your family, you just need a little help."
House-Senate Farm Bill conference committee talks officially began in late October. The two chambers will work to compromise on a bill and then bring it back to the rest of Congress for debate.