Congresswoman Cheri Bustos

Representing the 17th District of Illinois
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Agriculture & Rural Development

Fighting For Agriculture and Rural Development

Some of the world’s richest farmland is in the 17th District, and as our number one industry, agriculture supports our economy in a variety of ways.

Our region is the home to thousands of farmers and millions of acres of farmland.  It is a world leader in agricultural products, including grain and oilseed production, as well as hogs and cattle. 

It is also home to the headquarters of large manufacturing employers Caterpillar and Deere & Co., which employ thousands of workers.

Additionally, the USDA research center in Peoria is at the forefront of finding new uses for crops and creating new technology that improves environmental quality and food safety.

We need to sustain and enhance our agricultural economy and take advantage of our natural resources, using them as tools of economic competitiveness and growth.  We have an abundant supply of soil, wind, sunshine and water in our region that we can make into the foundation for new ethanol, biodiesel, hydroelectric power, solar and wind energy.

As a member of the House Committee on Agriculture, and the Farm Commodities and Risk Management Subcommittee and the Livestock and Rural Development Subcommittee, I will fight each and every day for our region’s agricultural community. 

My vision for strengthening our agricultural economy, both in rural areas and small towns, is anchored in growth and sustainability:

  • Support alternative energy projects via low interest revolving loan funds.
  • Promote LEEDS certification in new buildings and retrofitting existing buildings to meet higher sustainability standards.
  • Improve broadband access to underserved and rural communities.
  • Focus eco-energy industrial parks on assisting entrepreneurs and small businesses.
  • Eliminate trade barriers that hinder U.S. agricultural product exportation.

More on Agriculture & Rural Development

May 18, 2016

City of Galesburg working on finalizing their application for funding through Drinking Water State Revolving Fund

WASHINGTON - Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos announced that the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) has given preliminary approval for the City of Galesburg to receive up to $4 million in forgivable loans from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, which receives its source funding from the Federal Government.

May 18, 2016

WASHINGTON – Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17) issued the following statement after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a proposed rule for 2017 Renewable Fuel Standards:

Mar 15, 2016

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky will travel to Cuba on Sunday with President Obama. Obama will be only the second sitting U.S. President to visit Cuba after Calvin Coolidge’s visit in 1928.

Feb 26, 2016

WASHINTON – Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17) was invited to the White House to discuss the United States’ policy towards Cuba. In the meeting with one of President Obama’s top national security advisers, Congresswoman Bustos voiced her strong support for increasing agricultural trade to benefit Illinois’ agricultural economy.

Feb 10, 2016

WASHINGTON – Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17) spoke to the U.S. Agriculture Coalition for Cuba at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. As a strong advocate for Illinois farmers on the House Agriculture Committee, Congresswoman Bustos stressed the importance of finding new markets for agricultural products.


Jan 27, 2016

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today Congresswoman Cheri Bustos applauded new rules from the Departments of Commerce and Treasury that will make it easier for American manufacturers, such as Caterpillar and Deere & Co., to export goods to Cuba. Since Congresswoman Bustos returned from her bipartisan trade mission to Cuba in October, she has been focused on cutting through red tape to make it easier for Cuba to access the same kinds of standard credit markets and terms offered by virtually every other nation in the world when they make imports.

Dec 17, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos and U.S. Rep. Ron Kind announced that their request for increased funding for rail safety was included in the year end spending bill. The bill is expected to come to the House floor for a vote on Friday.


Dec 3, 2015

Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos, a member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, voted with a bipartisan majority to pass the five-year Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act. This final version of the conference bill now moves to the Senate where it is expected to pass and be sent to the President to be signed into law. The final vote was 359 to 65.


Nov 30, 2015

Washington, DC - Today Congresswoman Cheri Bustos issued the following statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) made its long awaited decision to increase ethanol usage in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). In June, the EPA released a proposed rule with significantly lower biofuel requirements, so as a member of the House Agriculture Committee and House Biofuels Caucus, Bustos fought back and helped secure this improved standard.


Nov 17, 2015

Washington, D.C. - Today U.S. Representatives Cheri Bustos (D, IL-17) and Rodney Davis (R, IL-13) announced that they have signed on to support the Cuba Agricultural Exports Act (H.R. 3687), making it a bipartisan bill.