Agriculture Secretary Vilsack had the following to say about the elimination of the 538 guaranteed loan program:
On the rural development side, we are proposing and suggesting some tailoring of our housing programs, reducing some of the programs and eliminating others, but still try to meet the overall housing needs through a very aggressive Guaranteed Loan Program.
Link to audio recording
Media Briefing: Remarks by Agriculture Secretary Vilsack on President’s Proposed FY 2012 Budget
Monday, February 14, 2011
MODERATOR: Good afternoon, everyone, and thank you for joining us today. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is here in this studio to talk about the proposed 2012 budget as it relates to agriculture. If you would like to ask a question of him, let us know by pressing Star/1 on your touchtone pad, and with that, we go straight to the Secretary.
SECRETARY VILSACK: Susan, thank you very much, and thank you all for joining. I am going to take a few minutes of your time this afternoon to talk about a very challenging and difficult budget that we presented today. In fact, there are several different challenges or realities that the USDA budget has to face in this year.
I think it’s no surprise that folks at USDA and across the country have become very concerned about the deficits, and the President has instructed us to take a look, a very close look, at our budget to find ways in which we can provide opportunities for reducing the deficit. USDA stepped up to the plate last year and steps up to the plate this year as well. Whenever you are talking about deficit reduction or eliminating or reducing programs, you are obviously talking about difficult and tough choices, both to reduce budgets and to reallocate resources. That’s one reality we had to face in this budget.
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