WASHINGTON (Gray DC) -- Key federal policies impacting farmers and Georgia’s economy are taking center stage on Capitol Hill.
The farm bill is up for a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives Friday.
Our Washington Reporter Alana Austin interviews Republican Congressman Rick Allen about the GOP's plan:
Alana Austin: “Congressman, tell us what you think this proposed farm bill would mean for your constituents back home.”
Rep. Rick Allen (R-GA): “Well it’s critical. As you know, farm income is down all over 50 percent from the last farm bill…What this bill allows our farmers to do, it helps them produce in an efficient, really the most economical manner, a very safe food supply, a very ample food supply for this nation.”
Alana: “Concerns are being raised about the proposed work requirements. What’s your response to the critique that this could take away benefits from people who say that they need them?”
Allen: “Yeah – well, I was in the business world for 35 years before I came to Congress. The greatest joy in my life was creating jobs, giving people the dignity and respect that they deserve. What we’re doing is exactly that: we’re empowering folks who feel like that they’re trapped. We’re giving them every opportunity to move out of that and empower them. This is not new - it’s working in Maine, it’s working in Kansas, we use those examples. We want to see that all across the nation.”
Alana: “Also interested in hearing how you think these proposed changes – if they move forward – might be working in tandem with the state changes already made in Georgia. How do you think the two can be jiving?”
Allen: “Well I think it’s going to ramp up our efforts in Georgia because some of the restraints have been the federal government. What we’re doing is we’re actually giving every state from the federal standpoint the opportunity to train a skilled workforce. We’re growing jobs in Georgia, we’re growing jobs in the 12th district, and I’m excited about getting 503,000 Georgians the opportunity to get a great job and for upward mobility.”
Alana: “Congressman Rick Allen, thank you so much for your time, sir.”
Allen: “Great. Great to be with you.”
Alana: “Thank you. I’m Alana Austin here in Washington - back to you.”