September 06, 2011

Rockefeller, Manchin Fight to Protect Jobs at Agricultural Farming Systems Research Center in Beaver

WASHINGTON, DC – Senator Jay Rockefeller today led his Senate colleagues, including Senator Joe Manchin, in a letter to the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee asking for continued funding to protect the jobs at ten Agricultural Research Service facilities slated for closure across the country, including one in West Virginia. The Raleigh County facility in Beaver has been in operation for more than 30 years and currently employs 55 West Virginians.

“I’m urging the Senate Appropriations Committee to recognize the value of independent agricultural research to our economy and nation’s competitiveness,” said Rockefeller. “The proposed closures will weaken the ability of the American agriculture industry to successfully compete in the global economy and it will put West Virginians out of work. If we’re really serious about our nation’s agricultural research, it’s critical we avoid cuts to the Agricultural Research Service and focus on investments that support American rural economic development and job creation.”

“In order for America to remain competitive, we must move forward with the science and research that that has been the hallmark of our country’s excellence,” Senator Manchin said. “I will do all I can to protect the jobs of the hardworking men and women who have made substantial contributions to our facility in Beaver, and ensure that our Agricultural Research Service facility is able to remain open and in operation”

Today’s letter is one of several steps Senator Rockefeller has taken to protect jobs at the Raleigh County facility. Rockefeller included the facility in his FY 2011 and FY 2012 requests to the Senate Appropriations Committee and he joined Representative Nick J. Rahall and Senator Carte Goodwin in a letter last fall urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture against closing the Beaver facility. Rockefeller also wrote to Office of Management and Budget Director Jacob Lew seeking funding for the Beaver facility in budget proposals.


The Agricultural Farming Systems Research Center in Beaver has been in operation for more than 30 years and designs management practices for livestock systems that deliver improved soil, water, and air quality. The Beaver facility, along with nine others across the country, is slated for closure due to the Administration’s proposed budget cuts.

A copy of Senator Rockefeller’s letter can be found HERE.