WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), a member of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, on Thursday voted for the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act of 2019, which includes important investments for Connecticut’s farmers. Additionally, Murphy secured language encouraging U.S. Department of Agriculture to create a national century farms recognition program based off his bipartisan Century Farms Act.

“I’ve been meeting with farmers across the state, and I’m constantly in awe of the work they do to provide healthy, locally-grown food. I fought for a seat on the Senate Appropriations Committee because I wanted to have a seat at the table when it came to advocating for the programs that matter to Connecticut. Today’s bill included funding for programs that support research activities at UConn, research for Connecticut nursery industry, and access to food for Connecticut’s low-income seniors. I’ll keep fighting to make sure this legislation gets signed into law and farmers in Connecticut get the resources they deserve,” said Murphy. 

Specifically, Murphy fought for and supported the following investments:

  • $300 million for the Smith-Lever program, which supports UConn’s beginning farmer outreach and Connecticut 4-H programs;
  • $405 million for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, which funds research at UConn on topics like food safety, water resources, climate variability, and sustainable plant and animal production systems;
  • $238 million for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, which helps feed 2,400 low-income seniors in Connecticut;
  • $4 million for the Acer Access and Development Program, which Murphy led advocacy for and supports the growth of maple syrup production;
  • $5.6 million for the Floriculture and Nursery Research Initiative, which supports research for Connecticut’s robust nursery industry that includes over 1,700 nurseries and 30,000 local jobs;
  • $36 million for the McIntire-Stennis program, which supports forestry research grants at UConn.

Earlier this year, Murphy helped secure relief for Connecticut dairy farmers in the bipartisan budget deal, including $1 billion in immediate relief through significant improvements to the Margin Protection Program-Dairy (MPP) and other dairy insurance programs.