Sens. Mark Begich (D-AK) and John McCain (R-AZ) have introduced an amendment to the Senate farm bill that would make public the names of the individuals who benefit from taxpayer-funded crop insurance premium subsidies.
“We applaud Senators Begich and McCain for offering this common sense proposal to lift the veil of secrecy from crop insurance subsidies,” said Scott Faber, Environmental Working Group (EWG) vice president for government affairs. “Taxpayers and policymakers need to know who benefits from a $90 billion subsidy program that provides millions of dollars each year to some of the nation’s most successful businesses.”
Last year, 26 policyholders each received more than $1 million in premium subsidies and more than 10,000 policyholders each received $100,000 or more, according to an EWG analysis. Yet the names of these recipients have been kept secret from taxpayers.
The Begich-McCain amendment would lift the veil of secrecy that has protected the recipients’ identities for more than a decade.
“Crop insurance may still be a secret safety net for some, but the names of subsidy recipients should not be a state secret,” added Faber.