Wisconsin Ag Coalition Celebrates Legislative Action on Ag Roads Investment

Posted By: Rebekah Sweeney Advocacy, WCMA News,

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The Wisconsin Ag Coalition applauds the Wisconsin State Assembly and Senate today after both voted unanimously to pass Senate Bill 247. The bill, authored by Senators Marklein (R-Spring Green), Tomczyk (R-Mosinee) and Ballweg (R-Markesan), and Representatives Tranel (R-Cuba City) and VanderMeer (R-Tomah), creates an Agricultural Road Improvement Program (ARIP) to provide grants for local governments to repair and rebuild crumbling roads and bridges that create problems for farmers and food processors. The bill now goes to Governor Tony Evers’ desk for his signature.

“Improvement to agricultural infrastructure are long overdue here in Wisconsin. This historic funding of $150 million will start to modernize rural infrastructure by directing grant funds to the roads supporting our global supply chain. Thank you to Senators Marklein, Tomczyk and Ballweg, and Representatives Tranel and VanderMeer for authoring this important legislation and to the members of the Wisconsin legislature for your support of Wisconsin agriculture.” - Kevin Krentz, President of Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation

"Rural road improvements are essential for the stability and strength of Wisconsin's dairy processing businesses and the entire food supply chain - from farm to table. Our deepest thanks go to Sen. Marklein, Rep. Tranel, and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle and from every part of the state who worked to bring this bill to the Governor's desk." - Rebekah Sweeney, Senior Director of Programs & Policy for the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association

“Wisconsin’s economic health and stability is dependent on the ability for businesses like Foremost Farms to serve and create value for farm families. I’m pleased our government officials recognized the need to provide the infrastructure to ensure continued access to them.” - Greg Schlafer, President & CEO, Foremost Farms USA

Wisconsin agriculture has been significantly impacted by supply chain issues in recent years, and poor rural road conditions place additional strain on the food supply chain. Consumers experience the effects of these challenges firsthand as they encounter rising prices and limited availability of food products in local grocery stores.

The Wisconsin Ag Coalition, a group of organizations representing agricultural interests in the state, praises the legislative action on this issue as a vital step towards revitalizing the agricultural economy.

“Wisconsin farmers are grateful to the Wisconsin State Legislature for this historic investment in rural infrastructure. Rural roads are the backbone of our agricultural economy.” - Tamas Houlihan, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association

“Getting our products safely and efficiently from our growers’ farms to processing and consumers is a critical part of Wisconsin’s agricultural economy. This investment in rural Wisconsin will provide essential funding to maintain our state food supply chain.” - Tom Lochner, Executive Director of the Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association

The Ag Coalition thanks local government partners, other coalition members and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation for their support to move this important initiative.

The Wisconsin Ag Coalition includes: Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association, AgCountry Farm Credit Services, Cooperative Network, Compeer Financial, CropLife America, Dairy Business Association, GreenStone Farm Credit Services, Growmark, Insight FS, Wisconsin Agri-Business Association, Wisconsin Association of Meat Processors, Wisconsin Association of Professional Agricultural Consultants, Wisconsin Biomass Energy Coalition, Wisconsin Biofuels Association, Wisconsin Cattlemen’s Association, Wisconsin Corn Growers Association, Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation, Wisconsin Hemp Alliance, Wisconsin Horse Council, Wisconsin Pork Association, Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Growers Association, Wisconsin Soybean Association, Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association, and Wisconsin Veterinary Medical Association.