Food & Farm Policy Updates (NSAC): Pigford II, Healthy Food

House Approves Funding for Pigford II Settlement

On Tuesday, November 30, the House of Representatives passed the Claims Resolution Act of 2010, which authorizes nearly $4.6 billion to fund the settlements in two class-action discrimination lawsuits.  The measure passed 256-152.  It now goes to the President for his signature, ending a long, tortuous, but ultimately successful path to becoming law. The lawsuits are Pigford v. Glickman, which will give $1.15 billion to black farmers who were discriminated against by USDA in the 1980s and 1990s; and Cobell v. Salazar, which will give $3.4 billion to Indian tribes whose trust accounts were mismanaged by the Department of Interior.  Read more…

Healthy Food Financing Initiative Introduced in House, Senate

On Tuesday, November 30, Senator Gillibrand (D-NY) and Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-PA) introduced bills (S 3986/HR 6462) in the Senate and House, respectively, that would establish the Healthy Food Financing Initiative (HFFI) within the USDA.  Nine Senators and five Representatives joined as original co-sponsors. The HFFI program would improve access to healthy food in underserved areas and revitalize low-income communities by providing loans and grants to fresh, healthy food retailers to overcome the various barriers to entry in underserved urban, suburban, and rural areas.  Read more…

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