Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation President Kevin Krentz issued the following statement regarding Gov. Tony Evers’ budget proposal.
“Gov. Evers’ budget proposal highlighted several items that impact Wisconsin’s farmers and rural communities.
Wisconsin Farm Bureau is pleased to see support for market expansion, meat processing, farmer-led conservation efforts, applied agricultural research and farmer mental health and wellbeing.
Market support through the Wisconsin Initiative for Agricultural Exports and the Dairy Processor Grant Program will help support the diverse commodities grown and raised in Wisconsin with continued innovation for our dairy industry.
Local meat processing needs has become a key issue for Farm Bureau members across the entire state. Support for current meat processors through additional DATCP inspector positions is much needed. Additionally, encouraging meat processing careers and expansion through the Meat Processing Grant Program will help our state build out this infrastructure.
Farmer-led conservation efforts have already seen great success across our state and continued support for the Producer-Led Watershed Grant Program is necessary. WFBF is optimistic about additional funding to provide support for new and existing water-related conservation efforts.
Funding for UW-System’s applied agricultural research programs is essential to the continued viability of Wisconsin’s agricultural economy. Farm Bureau supports the increased investment in agricultural research faculty who are a critical link between farmers and cutting edge on-farm practices.
Much needed attention was again given to mental health support for farmers through ongoing funding for the Farmer Mental Health Assistance Program. Farm Bureau continues to support programs and resources to aid farmers, their family members and farm workers in receiving mental healthcare to support their wellbeing.
We are pleased to see Gov. Evers include many agricultural priorities in his budget proposal. Wisconsin agriculture generates $104.8 billion dollars toward our state’s economy and WFBF encourages this fact to be front of mind as budget discussions progress.
This is a first-step in a multi-step process and we look forward to working with state legislators as they deliberate on the 2021-22 biennial budget.”