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$22 Million in Crop Insurance Subsidies Paid to Deceased Policyholders

New GAO Analysis Underscores Need for Real Reform in 2013 Farm Bill
Contact: 
(202) 667-6982
ssciammacco@ewg.org
For Immediate Release: 
Monday, July 29, 2013

Washington, D.C. - A new report by the Government Accountability Office, which shows crop insurance subsidies going to deceased policyholders, underscores the need to reform the federal crop insurance program, the Environmental Working Group said in a statement. 

Scott Faber, EWG’s Senior Vice President of Government Affairs, said:

Not only are unlimited crop insurance subsidies flowing to the largest and most successful farm businesses, they are now going to deceased policyholders. At a time when some lawmakers want to cut off funding for the hungriest children, we find out today the federal government has spent $22 million over four years to lavish insurance subsidies to individuals who are no longer alive. It is appalling to learn that bureaucrats didn’t match the names of the recipients of crop insurance with the Social Security Administration’s master list of deceased individuals. This irresponsible use of scarce taxpayer dollars reinforces just how broken the system is and how badly it is in need of reform.  

In particular, taxpayers deserve greater transparency so they know exactly where their dollars are going and who’s getting them. Congress has an opportunity to fix this wasteful spending in the next farm bill. There’s never been a better time for reform.

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