578 Groups Agree: White House Cuts to USDA “Retreat” from Rural Needs

A couple weeks ago I pointed out sizable cuts that Donald Trump would make to USDA Rural Development programs. Those cuts would cost South Dakota tens of millions of dollars in federal economic stimulus that supports rural housing, businesses, and water and waste projects.

Agreeing with me that cutting USDA Rural Development is bad for South Dakota and all of rural America are the Center for Rural Affairs, the National Rural Housing Coalition, and 576 other organizations that sent a letter this week to key Senators  urging them to protect Rural Development. They ask the Senators to at least maintain last year’s funding levels and resist the Administration’s call to eliminate the office of Under Secretary for Rural Development. The say that the Administration’s budget is a “wholesale retreat” from real problems facing rural America:

According an analysis of socio-economic well-being prepared by the Wall Street Journal, rural counties in America are in worse condition than big cities, suburbs and small or medium metro areas. Rural communities, and the people who live in them, have higher poverty and unemployment rates as well as a higher incidence of substandard housing and rent overburden when compared to metropolitan areas.

Virtually every community in the country with inadequate drinking water has a population of 3,300 or less. Although much of the country has seen recovery from the financial crisis, rural America still lags behind. The decade’s long trend of community bank closure and consolidation has hit rural areas particularly hard. The number of community banks in the United States has declined by an average of 300 per year over the past 30 years, according to data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and a collapse in the price of agricultural commodities has added stress on many small towns and farming communities [National Rural Housing Coalition + 577 organizations, letter to Senators Cochran, Leahy, Hoeven, and Merkley, 2017.06.12].

The following South Dakota groups signed the letter:

Let’s hope our rural Congressional delegation listens to these rural constituents and ignores the harmful budget proposed by the White House rural America self-destructively voted for.


5 Responses to 578 Groups Agree: White House Cuts to USDA “Retreat” from Rural Needs

  1. Porter Lansing

    To Pres. Trump, rural means New Jersey. While Jersey does grow the tastiest, juiciest, most flavorful tomatoes in USA it’s not quite indicative of what rural America represents. Listen to your Red State sycophant Senators and Reps, Don. Between kissings of your ring, they might give you a clue about it.

  2. Wonder if our MOC’s are supporting all these cuts? Oh, guess we know that’s where Noem stands cuz she wants to get rid of the “death tax” because, “Sob!”, her daddy didn’t do estate planning! And Thune and Rounds? Well, guessing Thune and Rounds are just as secretive about this as Thune is about the Senate version of the catastrophic destruction of American health care called the AHCA!

  3. The attude that seems to be societies norm is “what’s good for me and the hell with you!”Listen to them whine when their Ox gets Gord! South Dakota and the rest of rural America there’s a storm coming!

  4. Thune and Noem have offered mealy-mouthed responses to these cuts. Rounds has avoided mentioning the USDA cuts, but he supports spending more on the military.

  5. Oh please, give them what they voted for. Let them reap what they sowed: hard and often.
    There is no other way to get it through their heads that they voted against their interest for generations.