Senate Spending Bill to Include $4 Billion in Drought-Relief Funding; Western Growers' Dave Puglia Comments
IRVINE, CA - The recent Senate spending bill is on the minds of many fresh produce operators in the Western United States. It was announced last week that Senators secured $4 billion in drought-relief funding for the Colorado River Basin, which would be crucial to restoring water resources in the West.
Western Growers President and Chief Executive Officer Dave Puglia issued a statement in response to this news.
“We appreciate the determination of Senator Kyrsten Sinema and her colleagues to secure substantial new funding for drought-related priorities in the Colorado River Basin, which supports 5.7 million acres of irrigated agriculture including most of the nation’s winter vegetables as well as other high-value foods such as citrus and melons,” Puglia’s statement read. “Not only does the Colorado River supply the water and power needs of nearly 40 million people across the West, it sustains the agricultural output of Yuma, Arizona, and California’s Imperial Valley. Without fast and serious federal assistance, a significant portion of the nation’s food supply hangs in the balance.”
Arizona democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema outlined this funding as part of her demands for the spending bill. According to Bloomberg, Democratic Senators Mark Kelly of Arizona, Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada, and Michael Bennet of Colorado made the announcement.
“Senator Sinema and the other Western members of the Senate who insisted on inclusion of this relief have our sincere gratitude,” Puglia’s statement concluded.
As more efforts to repair the impacts of the drought are announced, ANUK will be sure to report.