OMB Director Backs Subsidy Caps

Size of caps and limits still being debated.

Published on: Mar 26, 2009

House and Senate lawmakers and farm groups have opposed the President's proposal to cap farm subsidies at $250,000 a year. Speaking with reporters Wednesday, Peter Orszag, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, said he believes Congress will find a way to reduce agricultural subsidies, especially for large corporate farms, while protecting small and family farms.

The Director indicated that capping subsidies is just one way to get at this issue. Orszag insists Senate Budget Chair Kent Conrad, D-N.D., and House Ag Chair Collin Peterson, D-Minn., are trying to find savings in agriculture and some will end up coming from subsidy cuts for large corporate farms. But Conrad's budget blueprint lacks such cuts and endorses instead seeking savings in EQIP, crop insurance and market access programs.

Peterson has already declared the President’s proposal to end subsidies to farms with sales over $500,000 more than dead on arrival. Senate Ag Committee Ranking Member Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., has made similar statements.