Almost six months after the beginning of the fiscal year, the Senate on Tuesday approved a $410 billion omnibus appropriations bill, which President Obama signed on Wednesday. The bill funds most of the federal government, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), through Sept. 30, 2009.
The final bill funds several of the USDA sheep programs including Wildlife Services (WS) operations receiving $76 million, WS methods development slotted for $17,986 and wool research granted $206,000. Research projects to increase approved therapeutic drugs for minor animal species (NRSP-7) received $429,000. Multi-state wolf and predator management programs were funded with Idaho, Montana and Wyoming being granted $926,000 and Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin delegated $727,000. The scrapie eradication program was flat lined again at $17.7 million.
Also under the legislation, the Market Access Program is funded at $200 million annually and the Foreign Market Development Program at $34.5 million annually, as authorized by the 2008 Farm Bill. These are both programs that are utilized by the American Sheep Industry Association for the continued development of international wool markets.