Earmark Cuts Could Hurt MU Agriculture School
Earmarks funded a lot of the research done on Mizzou's campus. They funded half of its newest research facility, the Life Sciences Center. Members of MU's agriculture school said that earmarks funded many of their best programs, but congress is trying to scrap them in order to lower spending.
Scott Baker, a spokesman for Missouri congressman Kenny Hulshof, said that earmarks do need reform.
"Earmark has become a dirty word, and that's not necessarily the case; there are some very legitimate projects that have been funded," he said. "There has to be more transparency in the process."
MU just hopes "reform" won't lead to "removed," because that could mean more than 160 layoffs in the school.
"It's a lot of money, it would be a real challenge to find the funds to carry those folks," said Mark Linit, Associate Dean of Research for MU Agriculture.
Linit also said farmers will be the ones to take the brunt of the cut.
"We will not be able to deliver the programs and the information that they've come to count on us for," he said.
Many hope these cuts don't become reality. The legislation would cut earmark funds to MU agriculture for at least one year. The house passed the bill, but the senate still needs to take a vote.