Last Week,Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (WA-03) and the full, bipartisan Washington Delegation sent a letter to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, urging him to expedite and issue a Secretarial Disaster Designation for the 2023 fresh sweet cherry harvest.
Sweet cherry growers in Washington faced devastating challenges throughout the 2023 season. Unusual weather patterns, including unseasonably high temperatures in the State of Washington, combined withheavy rains and cold weather in California, led to a shorter season for Washington growers and an oversupply of sweet cherries. Many growers in Washington state were forced to leave crops unharvested and experienced significant economic losses.
“Pacific Northwest growers suffered significant economic losses and were forced to leave as much as 35 percent of the crop unharvested due to this weather-driven disaster,” wrote the lawmakers. “We understand data provided to USDA indicates growers experienced losses of more than 50 percent.”
Fresh sweet cherries are a top agricultural commodity with a typical value of over $1 billion. A USDA Secretarial Disaster Designation will allow sweet cherry growers to access low interest emergency loans to help bridge operations into the 2024 season. Governor Inslee requested a Secretarial Disaster Designation and currently, the decision to issue the designation is with USDA Farm Service Agency officials and awaiting the Secretary of Agriculture’s approval.
Last week, Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez introduced the Partnerships for Agricultural Climate Action (PACA) Act to support Southwest Washington producers with the tools they need to help protect their operations from extreme weather events.
Gluesenkamp Perez, Ciscomani, Vasquez Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Support Rural Veterans’ Transportation to Health Care
Today, Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (WA-03), along with Reps. Juan Ciscomani (AZ-06) and Gabe Vasquez (NM-02), introduced the bipartisan Rural Veterans Transportation to Care Act to expand eligibility for rural veterans to get transportation to VA health facilities. The legislation would expand eligibility for the VA’s Highly Rural Transportation Grant (HRTG) Program, which provides grant […]
Gluesenkamp Perez, Bipartisan Colleagues Introduce Bill to Secure Borders, Support Democratic Allies
Yesterday, Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (WA-03), along with Reps. Jared Golden (ME-2), Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-1), Don Bacon (NE-2), Ed Case (HI-1), Mike Lawler (NY-17), Lori Chavez-DeRemer (OR-5), and Jim Costa (CA-21), introduced the bipartisan Defending Borders, Defending Democracies Act. This legislation provides, for one-year, necessary authorities to secure the U.S. Southern Border and defense-only appropriations […]
Gluesenkamp Perez, Golden, Peltola Introduce Resolution to Allow for Remote Committee Witnesses
Today, Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (WA-03), Rep. Jared Golden (ME-02), and Rep. Mary Peltola (AK-AL) – Co-Chairs of the Blue Dog Coalition – introduced the Bringing Real Ideas, Data, and Genuine Experience (BRIDGE) to Congress Resolution. The resolution would amend House rules to allow for remote appearances of committee witnesses without approval of the chair […]