Tipton Statement on Farm Bill Vote

WASHINGTON—Rep. Scott Tipton (CO-03) issued this statement after today’s vote in the House to pass the agriculture portion of the Farm Bill:

“Farmers and ranchers throughout my district have told me that to help them survive, especially during the ongoing drought, they need the long-term certainty that the farm bill provides.  Today the House passed legislation to provide that long-term certainty for the agriculture community by continuing vital programs including crop insurance, research, investments in production and regulatory relief. I look forward to future discussions on the nutrition assistance aspects of the original Farm Bill that were not considered today and am hopeful that in the future we are able to move forward with needed reforms to eliminate waste, fraud and abuse in these programs while ensuring that those who are truly in need of assistance have full access to it.”

The portion of the Farm Bill that passed today included an amendment by Tipton and Reps. Cory Gardner (CO-04), Doug Lamborn (CO-05) and Mike Coffman (CO-06) to allow the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) to lease new air tankers, at no additional cost to taxpayers, to fight wildfires. Currently, the Forest Service is limited to leasing only decommissioned military tankers and operating commercial tankers, restricting access to the newest and most effective tankers, as well as forcing the agency to choose from a limited number of available tankers.  As a result, since 2002, the USFS fleet has dwindled from 44 to 9 tankers, a cause for alarm given the severity and frequency of catastrophic wildfires. Read more about that amendment here.