Press Releases

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WASHINGTON – Today, Representative Sam Farr (D-Carmel) expressed profound disappointment that Republicans in Congress abandoned the process to pass a federal budget for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2017 in favor of a temporary Continuing Resolution (CR). 
Fiscal Year 2017 started on October 1, 2016 and runs through September 30, 2017. The temporary CR, which passed today, maintains funding for most government programs at the Fiscal Year 2016 level  through April 28, 2017. Rep. Farr has served on the House Appropriations Committee since 1999 and is a key player on the negotiations for the annual spending bills.
“I’m extremely disappointed that after months of hard work and compromise in the House Appropriations Committee on a federal budget for the entire fiscal year, Republicans in Congress decided to throw it all away to gain political leverage by waiting for President-elect Trump to take office," said Rep. Farr. "The work we do in committee to iron out the annual spending bills to fund our federal government is critical oversight and allows us to strengthen federal programs and agencies."
For example, Rep. Farr helped secure a $71 million increase for the National Park Service for Fiscal Year 2017 compared to the current funding maintained by the CR. By moving forward with a temporary CR, the National Park Service loses out on the additional federal funding, some of which could have been used for educational programs, road repairs and trail maintenance at Pinnacles National Park. Additionally, Rep. Farr worked to increase funding for the U.S Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service by $36 million for Fiscal Year 2017. This additional funding would have helped control or eradicate plant and animal pests and diseases that are harmful for our Central Coast growers, but this funding increase will also not be realized.
"By tossing all these negotiations out, Republicans in Congress aren't allowing federal programs to best serve the American people and that's a disservice to all our constituents and to the institution of Congress,” added Rep. Farr.
“As I leave elected office after more than 40 years, including nearly the last 24 years as the Central Coast’s U.S. Representative, I urge my Republican colleagues in Congress to summon the energy and courage to ensure that government be a force for good. Lurching from CR to CR, putting political considerations ahead of governing, and ignoring thoughtful debate and the work of committees tears at the fabric of our democracy,” said Rep. Farr. 
First elected to Congress in 1993, Rep. Farr is retiring at the end of the 114th Congress.

WASHINGTON — Following the FAA's implementation of NextGen procedures in Northern California airspace in late 2014 and early 2015, including the March 2015 implementation of the new SERFR route, we met with the FAA's leadership to address these concerns for the affected communities. In order to vet potential solutions, the FAA sought our help to convene a committee of elected local government officials to provide a forum for communities outside the purview of the SFO Airport Roundtable.

We are tremendously grateful that 12 local elected officials and their alternates stepped forward and devoted countless hours to public hearings, technical briefings and document review. The process was transparent, thorough and deliberative.

We support the majority of the Select Committee's final recommendation to return to the previous BSR Arrival ground track. While the FAA has committed to designing the routing over the previous BSR lateral track with the highest feasible altitudes and with the lowest possible noise impact, the Select Committee has recommended that at a minimum, the route be no lower and the noise impact no greater than the previous BSR. These minimums apply to the entire route including in the vicinity of MENLO intersection, where the Select Committee is recommending not only a higher altitude over MENLO but also specifying that the planes use only idle power over this area. The return to the BSR track is planned as an interim solution while the FAA works with the affected communities and its elected leaders to develop and identify the best long term solution based on the Committee’s recommendations. Prior to the FAA taking any action, it will assess and report any environmental impacts in accordance with the National Environmental Protection Act and applicable agency rules.

October 26, 2016

WASHINGTON – Today, Representative Sam Farr (D-Carmel) released the following statement regarding U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter ordering the Pentagon to stop collecting repayments of enlistment bonuses given to California National Guard members. 
“It’s unconscionable to ask our brave men and women who received enlistment bonuses and benefits in good faith to pay it back years later. After signing letters to congressional leadership in both parties and Secretary Carter earlier this week, I’m pleased to see Speaker Ryan and Secretary Carter pledge to resolve this. 
“However, the Department of Defense must also ensure that the service members who have already repaid their bonuses and benefits are quickly and fully reimbursed. And we have to make sure this doesn’t happen again. 
“Along the Central Coast, Camp Roberts in southern Monterey County continues to serve as a major training and mobilization facility for many National Guard units being deployed to fight the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Many of these soldiers and their families are my constituents and I will continue working and advocating for them.”

November 29, 2016

WASHINGTON – Today, Representative Sam Farr (D-Carmel) announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded the University of California – Santa Cruz (UCSC) $439,676 to research sustainable practices, including pest control, pollination and water storage, for urban agriculture. 
“Not only is the Central Coast a leading producer of fresh produce for tables across the nation and abroad, we’re also leaders in agriculture research,” said Rep. Farr. “During my 40-plus years in elected office, I’ve been a champion for increasing access to fresh fruits and vegetables and for improving sustainable agriculture practices. As the top Democrat on the House Appropriations Subcommittee overseeing USDA’s budget, I’m really pleased to support this research and help bring this grant home for UCSC.” 
Across the nation, population in many urban areas is growing but many residents lack access to fresh fruits and vegetables. As a result, an increasing number of these residents are growing produce in urban gardens. This research will provide information to improve sustainable practices for urban agriculture. 
Dr. Stacy Philpott, Associate Professor and the Heller Chair of Agroecology at UCSC, will lead the research team. "Urban agriculture is increasingly important in supplying food for urban residents", she said, "yet, we lack scientific and management information about how to enhance pest control, pollination, and water conservation in urban gardens in order to improve food access. We are excited to work with diverse gardener communities in the central coast to fill this information gap."
Rep. Farr is the Ranking Member on the House Agricultural Appropriations Subcommittee and has used this position to steer millions of dollars toward invaluable research on specialty crops, food safety, pest detection, other vital programs, and secured federal funding for the new U.S. Agriculture Research Station in Salinas. He is also co-chair of the Congressional Organic Caucus.
The grant announcement from USDA is available here


October 14, 2016
WASHINGTON – Representative Sam Farr (D-Calif.) is pleased to host a naturalization ceremony at Pinnacles National Park on Tuesday, October 18, 2016 at 10:30 a.m. 
Eleven people are expected to take the oath to become America’s newest citizens at this special naturalization ceremony, held at America’s newest National Park during the National Park Service’s Centennial. Also attending the ceremony will be approximately 25 high school students from Santa Cruz and their parents, and singers from Hartnell College will perform patriotic songs. 
Rep. Farr authored legislation that was enacted in 2013 to elevate Pinnacles National Monument to Pinnacles National Park. There are more than 400 national park sites across the nation, but only 59 are designated as National Parks. As America’s newest National Park, Pinnacles is helping to drive economic growth through expanded tourism to the region.
U.S. Representative Sam Farr
City of Soledad Mayor Fred Ledesma
City of Greenfield Mayor John Huerta, Jr.
City of King Council Member Mike LaBarre
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Field Office Director James Wyrough
Pinnacles National Park Supervisory Interpretive Ranger PT Lathrop
Citizenship ceremony
Tuesday, October 18, 2016
10:30 a.m. 
Pinnacles National Park – West Entrance Visitor Center
Please click here for a map and directions.