As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Murray works regularly with Washington State University, commodity organizations, and other agricultural stakeholders to identify and fund high-priority research projects in the Pacific Northwest.
Each year, Senator Murray fights to protect research funding in the Agriculture, Rural Development, FDA, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill. She has also championed funding to strengthen organic crops research and education, and to create a virus-free “motherblock” of plant material so that Washington’s growing wine industry remains strong and competitive.
The 2008 Farm Bill was a great victory for Washington state farmers because of the resources it put into fruits and vegetables, nutrition programs, rural development, conservation, and alternative energy. While it was being considered in the Senate, Senator Murray supported the inclusion of important agricultural programs that benefit Washington state’s farmers, producers, and families, such as:
Senator Murray has fought to ensure our state’s farmers have adequate financial support during tough times and to ensure that they can keep farming.
Transportation is a very important part of Washington’s agriculture industry. As Chair of the Senate Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Appropriations Subcommittee, and a member of the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee, Senator Murray has fought to ensure farmers can continue to move their products from the farm to the marketplace by funding programs such as:
Senator Murray is fighting to break down barriers that have limited where Washington growers can sell their products, to ensure they can remain competitive in a global economy. To help open markets, she has:
Hunger is an ongoing crisis that hits seniors and children especially hard.
Through annual appropriations and legislation, such as the 2008 Farm Bill, Senator Murray has fought to expand critical programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly called the Food Stamp Program), the Emergency Food Assistance Program, child nutrition programs like the School Lunch and Breakfast Programs, and the Special Supplemental Nutrition for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), so that low-income children, seniors, and families can get enough to eat.
Senator Murray has also worked to expand initiatives such as the Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Snack Program and the Farm-to-Cafeteria Program, which help ensure school children get fresh fruits and vegetables while providing our local farmers with another market for their produce.
Our immigration system is broken, and fixing our immigration policies is critical for communities and industries in Washington state and across our nation. It’s time for comprehensive immigration reform that will enhance our country’s security, strengthen the economy, and reflect our core American values.
Because seasonal farmworkers are critical to our state’s agriculture industry, Senator Murray has also been a longtime supporter of the Agricultural Job Opportunity, Benefits, and Security Act (AgJOBS). Senator Murray will continue to fight in the Senate for farmers’ workforce needs and for farmworkers.
Senator Murray is also working to ensure that farmworkers have housing, health care, education, and job training by:
The federal government has a long history of responding to agricultural disasters, and Senator Murray believes that we have a responsibility to provide aid when disaster strikes our farmers. That’s why she worked to include a permanent agricultural disaster program in the 2008 Farm Bill, which insures that our growers have access to disaster aid when they need it.
Senator Murray has also long supported allowing farmers to purchase better crop insurance. She will continue to work to ensure that Washington farmers can access critical crop insurance and disaster programs.