Meat Industry INSIGHTS Newsletter

970616 Senate Committee Chairman Says Inspection User Fees "Not Likely"

The Clinton administration proposal for $390 million in user fees for meat inspection is unlikely to be approved by Congress, the chairman of the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on agriculture said.

"I don't think we're going to approve the fees as a matter of fact," chairman Thad Cochran, Mississippi Republican, said after his panel's first hearing on the fiscal 1998 budget for USDA.

USDA Secretary Dan Glickman said the fees would assure a safe meat supply. Glickman appealed to the meat industry to support the fees. "This is a very tight budget," Glickman said.

Cochran said it would be difficult to provide an increase in discretionary funding for USDA. The White House budget asks for a $500 million increase, to be offset by the inspection fees and changes in crop insurance operations.

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