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MDARD Director Applauds Governor Whitmer’s FY25 Budget for Agriculture Support
Michigan Ag Connection - 02/12/2024

Tim Boring, Director of the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD), expressed appreciation for Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 Executive Budget Recommendation. The budget, building on the success of the previous year, focuses on economic growth while ensuring affordability for Michigan residents. Director Boring commended the balanced and fiscally responsible approach that avoids tax increases for Michiganders.

Governor Whitmer's budget targets key areas that impact residents' budgets, aiming to make life more affordable. This includes addressing significant expenses such as housing, transportation, health care, utilities, and food. Director Boring highlighted the Governor's commitment to Michigan's food and agricultural sectors, as well as rural communities.

"The proposed budget allows MDARD to continue its effort to provide food safety, encourage environmental sustainability, foster economic development, and implement efficient and effective government," stated Director Boring. He emphasized the shared goal of keeping Michigan a prominent force in food and agriculture globally.

Governor Whitmer's budget maintains support for vital MDARD programs, allocating $4 million for a Farm to Family Program. This initiative supports regenerative farming, enhances agriculture supply chains, and promotes Michigan food products through a cooperative approach, fostering direct economic impacts.

Other highlighted allocations include increased staffing for Agricultural Environmental Assurance, targeting on-farm best management and conservation practices, with a focus on water quality improvement in priority watersheds. Additionally, a $600,000 allocation for Emergency Management Federal Support Grant Authorization aims to bolster emergency services and incident command training.

Director Boring stressed the collaborative effort required to make Michigan a food and agriculture powerhouse, acknowledging the significance of partnerships with organizations like The Nature Conservancy and stakeholders such as Tiki Hut Farm Market.

The budget recommendation for FY25 allocates a total ongoing funding of $144.2 million, with $77 million from the state’s general fund, reinforcing Michigan's commitment to agricultural sustainability, economic development, and overall resilience.

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