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GLIN==> Northeast-Midwest Weekly Update -- 26 July 2004

The House and Senate Great Lakes Task Forces are circulating a letter that asks Energy & Water appropriators to support funding and authorizing language for a second barrier in the Chicago Ship and
Sanitary Canal in order to block the invasive of Asian carp into the Great Lakes.  The lawmakers are requesting that barrier II be designated a federal project, and that sufficient funding be provided so that the Army Corps of Engineers can operate barriers I and II, improve barrier I, and reimburse non-federal sponsors.  The letter’s signature deadline is July 29. 


Contact:  Joy Mulinex with the Great Lakes Task Forces (202/224-1211).




Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) is seeking cosponsors for the Farmers Market Infrastructure Assistance Act of 2004 (H.R. 4558).  Direct sales of fresh local farm products are on the rise throughout the country.  More than 3,500 farmers markets operate nationwide, bringing together producers and consumers to obtain fresh and wholesome products and serving as important tools for economic development and dietary improvement.  The legislation proposes $50 million annually through fiscal 2007 in order to finance grants, loans, and loan guarantees to public agencies and nonprofit organizations for the construction of new farmers markets or the improvement or rehabilitation of existing farmers markets, with the condition that at least 50 percent of the market area must be reserved for the sale of products that are produced locally by farmers, ranchers, or associations of farmers and ranchers.. 


Reps. Kaptur and Jim Walsh (R-NY) continue to seek cosponsors for H.R. 4446, which would reform funding for the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program.  That program provides eligible senior citizens with wholesome fresh fruits and vegetables, while also providing an additional source of revenue to family farmers who sell at farmers markets and roadside stands. To meet the program’s increasing demand, the bill would raise funding from the current $15 million annually to not less than $50 million in fiscal 2005, not less than $75 million in fiscal 2006, and not less than $100 million in fiscal 2007.  It also would allow up to 10 percent of the funds to be used to help cover the program’s operating expenses. 


Contact: Roger Szemraj with Rep. Kaptur (202/225-4146).