Nov 19, 2010

John Boyd Jr. is the president of the National Black Farmers Association.
 
 
The U.S. Senate is expected to approve $1.15 billion Friday to fund a settlement initally reached between the Agriculture Department and minority farmers more than a decade ago, according to Senate sources.

The 1997 Pigford v. Glickman case against the U.S. Agriculture Department was settled out of court 11 years ago. Under a federal judge's terms dating to 1999, qualified farmers could receive $50,000 each to settle claims of racial bias.

"This is much long overdue justice for black farmers," said John Boyd, founder and president of the National Black Farmers Association.

The Senate is also expected to clear -- in the same piece of legislation -- $3.4 billion to fund a separate settlement reached with the Department of Interior for mishandling of a trust fund managed for Native Americans.

In July, the House approved a war supplemental bill that included money to pay for the settlements. At the time, however, the Senate failed to approve the measure.

Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Oklahoma, dropped an objection to the package this week after Senate leaders agreed not to finance it through additional deficit spending.

Prominent members of both parties have voiced support for paying out the settlements.

If the Senate measure passes, it will have to be approved by the lame duck House before moving to President Obama's desk to be signed into law.

source

0 comments:

Post a Comment