Portland, Oregon - March 4, 2014 – After a two year absence, Oregon farmers and producers will again be able to claim a tax credit for food donations to hunger relief groups around the state. Today the Oregon House of Representatives unanimously endorsed SB 1541, which comes on the heels of a unanimous vote by the Senate on February 14. Governor Kitzhaber is expected to sign the bill.
“I am pleased to see the Legislature send the crop donation bill to the Governor’s desk for signature. This legislation represents the convergence of Oregon agriculture and the food bank network coming together to help feed Oregon's hungry population,” said Barry Bushue, President of Oregon Farm Bureau Federation.
Backed by farmers, businesses and organizations across the state, including the Oregon Farm Bureau and the Oregon Food Bank, the legislation gives farmers and producers a 15% tax credit on the wholesale price of their donation. “Oregon farmers and producers have always shown great generosity to food banks and pantries,” said Susannah Morgan, CEO of Oregon Food Bank. “This legislation increases their opportunities to provide fresh, healthy food to feed hungry people.”
The tax credit is an inexpensive solution to a big problem. Oregon’s unemployment rate remains above the national average and in an average month, more than 260,000 Oregonians need help in getting enough to eat. Every $1 in tax credit will bring in 11 pounds of donated food, at least 2.25 million plates of food will be available each year to hungry children, seniors, people with disabilities and others in need. The cost to taxpayers is estimated at only 11 cents per meal.
About Oregon Food Bank
With sufficient public will and support of the entire community, we believe it is possible to eliminate hunger and its root causes. Oregon Food Bank collects and distributes food through a network of four Oregon Food Bank branches and 17 independent regional food banks serving Oregon and southwest Washington. The Oregon Food Bank Network helps nearly 1 in 5 households fend off hunger. Oregon Food Bank also leads statewide efforts to increase resources for hungry families and to eliminate the root causes of hunger through advocacy, nutrition education, garden education, and helping communities strengthen local food systems. For more information visit oregonfoodbank.org
About Oregon Farm Bureau
The state’s largest general farm organization, Oregon Farm Bureau (OFB) is a voluntary, grassroots, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization representing the interests of the state's farmers and ranchers in the public and policymaking arenas.
First established in Oregon in 1919, Farm Bureau is organized in all 36 counties and has more than 8,000 member families that are professionally engaged in agriculture. Barry Bushue, an east Multnomah County berry and nursery stock producer, is OFB’s 15th President. For more information visit oregonfb.org
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