House Appropriations Committee

Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Subcommittee

Fiscal Year 2025 Budget Request for the Department of Agriculture

2362-A Rayburn
Thu, 21 Mar 2024 14:00:00 GMT

Subcommittee hearing on the FY2025 Department of Agriculture budget request.

  • Thomas Vilsack, Secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture

Under the current law, the 2025 request for discretionary budget authority to fund programs and operating expenses is $31.6 billion, slightly more than 6.84 percent increase, or $2.16 billion, above the 2024 annualized Continuing Resolution (CR) levels. Outlays for mandatory programs are $189.6 billion, 82.1 percent of total outlays. The remaining $41.4 billion, or 17.9 percent, of outlays are for discretionary programs such as: the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), food safety, rural development loans and grants, research and education, soil and water conservation technical assistance, animal and plant health, management of national forests, wildland firefighting, other Forest Service activities, and domestic and international marketing assistance.

The 2025 Budget supports a continued investment of approximately $11.6 billion to combat the climate crisis through all aspects of the food and agricultural systems by focusing on climate science, clean energy innovation, mitigation via climate-smart land management practices, and adaptation and resilience. The Budget includes approximately $5.1 billion to restore our national forests and mitigate wildfire risk, an operational increase of approximately $400 million from 2023 enacted. This includes $207 million for hazardous fuels reduction, equal to the 2023 enacted level. The Budget requests $1 billion in lending authority for Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) to support the transition to clean energy, and $6.5 billion in authority for rural electric loans to support additional clean energy, energy storage, and transmission projects that would create good-paying jobs. The Budget also requests $53 million in zero-interest loans for the Rural Energy Savings Program, which would help rural Americans implement durable cost- effective energy efficiency measures in their homes, which lowers energy costs and contributes to the President’s clean energy goals. The Budget also seeks $1 million in funding to continue work started by the Growing Climate Solutions Act. As directed in the Act, USDA will establish a voluntary program to help reduce entry barriers into voluntary environmental credit markets for farmers, ranchers, and private forest landowners.