Fears of a shutdown of the Dale Bumpers Small Farms Research Center in Booneville were recently quelled, for a while at least, when the House and Senate both passed a $1.1 trillion spending plan.
Passed in a 72-26 vote in the Senate after coming over from the House, the omnibus appropriations bill includes $2.579 million for the center.
Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor is chairman of the Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee and said he fought hard to include funding for Arkansas priorities such as the research center.
"I’ve had the opportunity to tour the Dale Bumpers Small Farms Research Center in Booneville several times, and every visit I’m impressed by the cutting-edge research they’re conducting there," Pryor said. "I was proud to help secure these funds for the center so they can continue to find new ways for our agricultural community to stay ahead in the ever-changing field of agriculture. With $17 billion of Arkansas’s economy depending on this industry, it’s more important than ever that we ensure our producers have the resources and tools they need to succeed."
The funding for Fiscal Year 2014 is an increase from $1.629 million the center received for Fiscal Year 2013, according to officials from Pryor’s office.