Combating Citrus Greening
Since 2005, citrus greening has cost Florida 8,200 jobs and $4.5 billion in economic damages. This highly contagious bacterial disease is threatening to wipe out citrus growers in my district and across our state. As you know, if Florida isn't growing, the world isn't drinking orange juice.
That’s why this week, I joined with Rep. Vern Buchanan (FL-16) to introduce new legislation to fight back against citrus greening.
Our bill, H.R. 853, has no cost to the taxpayer. Instead, it creates a trust fund, financed by existing tariffs on imported citrus, devoted to finding a cure for citrus greening. It will be funded up to $30 million annually. You can read the full bill here.
The bill has 22 cosponsors and is the House companion to legislation offered by Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL). Supporters of the bill include Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam, the Florida Farm Bureau Federation, and Florida Citrus Mutual.
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Did you know? Citrus greening first appeared in Florida citrus groves in 2005, and it spread to all 32 citrus-growing counties within two years. It now affects crops in California, Texas, Arizona, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and Hawaii.
Congressman Tom Rooney
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