October 4, 2013
House Appropriations Agriculture Subcommittee Chairman gave the following statement on the House floor today in support of H.J. Res. 75, a bill to continue funding for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children:
"Mr. Chairman, I rise in support of House Joint Resolution 75 which would continue funding for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, or the WIC program.
"The Fiscal Year 2013 Agriculture Appropriations bill provided sufficient funding, even after sequestration totaling $6.5 billion, to ensure that all participants received both nutritious foods and the nutrition services that are necessary for their health and well-being.
"Before the U.S. Department of Agriculture completely shut down its website, information could be found stating that short-term funding was available for WIC through the contingency reserve fund, carryover funds, and other available resources.
"While some States have indicated they have sufficient funds to last several more weeks, other States are not so fortunate.
"Many of us have seen headlines or perhaps received calls from constituents who report that their appointment at their local WIC clinic has been cancelled or that clinics are being closed.
"Numerous times we have heard our colleagues across the aisle mention that WIC cannot continue without an appropriation for Fiscal Year 2014 and this will leave millions of women, infants and children without proper nutrition.
"Now is the chance for my colleagues to join us in keeping this important program fully operational.
"By passing this resolution, we will help 8.7 million low-income women, infants and children who are nutritionally at risk continue to receive the nutrition they need.
"This resolution will keep WIC clinics across the nation open. No more appointments would be cancelled.
"Every Member in this House wants to provide WIC participants with the assistance they need and make sure no one is turned away.
"I would ask that my colleagues support this resolution that will supply adequate nutrition for women, infants, and children’s health.
"I reserve the balance of my time."