Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey requests an additional $150,000 for the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship.
During the governor’s budget hearing Monday, Northey requested an extra $150,000 to use for the Animal Industry Bureau at IDALS. He says this would provide additional support for preparations for and potentially responding to a foreign animal disease outbreak.
“Last year, that was funded at $100,000 first the first time. We’re asking for that to go to $250,000. It is our only change in total budget requests, Northey says.
The money would be used for staffing to help work farm organizations working with their producers on biosecurity and the ability to draw people together to have table-top exercises focusing on how to handle a foot and mouth disease outbreak. Northey also requested continued funding to support the Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program.
“That is the same request as last year at $3 million dollars. Last year there were dollars found in RIIF to be able to do that. It previously came out of a once cent per gallon tax and we appreciate the legislature coming up with those dollars,” Northey says.
He also wants funding for the Agriculture Drainage Well Closure Program and stressed the need for long-term water quality funding in the next legislative session. The total request for the department is $80 million for the upcoming fiscal year.