Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and several of his Senate colleagues today called on the Biden administration to explain its delay in delivering financial assistance to Iowa’s biofuel industry negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In June 2021, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced $700 million in aid to biofuel producers as part of the USDA Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative. USDA’s press release indicated that this assistance would be implemented within 60 days. Now, more than 120 days later, biofuel producers are still waiting.
“We are concerned about the delay in financial assistance for our nation’s biofuel sector during the unprecedented economic circumstances brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. … It is simply unacceptable that it has been over 120 days since your announcement and biofuel producers are still waiting. …It is past time our hardworking biofuel producers receive the critical aid that you promised,” the senators wrote.
Grassley has been a steadfast advocate for the biofuels industry especially as farmers have faced many obstacles stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, extreme drought and devastating derecho. Most recently, he introduced legislation to ensure Iowa farmers and biofuels producers also have additional support through the Commodity Credit Corporation in the midst of the pandemic.