Speaker Nancy Pelosi spoke at the 107th convention of the National Farmers Union in Arlington, Virginia yesterday, where she discussed the 2008 farm bill, rural broadband, biofuels and other pressing issues for farmers.
"There are real opportunities for our rural areas on the horizon," Pelosi said. "That's because it is America's farmers who will fuel America's energy independence - with cellulosic biofuels from your fields, with the wind and sun from your farms."
Pelosi mentioned concerns about President Obama's proposed budget for 2010, which includes cuts to direct payments for agribusinesses making over $500,000. The figure is for total earnings, which does not include farmers' costs for farm equipment and other needs.
"I know some of you have concerns about President Obama's budget and what it will mean to the family farmer and rancher," Pelosi said. "You also know that our nation is facing dire challenges, and that our responsibility to future generations demands fiscal responsibility now."
Pelosi said members of the House budget, House agriculture committee Chairman and the House agriculture appropriations subcommittee will be involved in the budget process "every step of the way in looking out for your interests," as the budget moves through Congress.