Senator Ron Wyden has requested that any year-end funding bill include an extension of the Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program to provide compensation for wine-grape growers. In a letter sent to the Senate appropriations committee Friday, Oregon’s senior senator also asked for $5.25 million of new funding for research on the effects of smoke exposure to wine grapes. He noted that many purchasers told growers their smoke-tainted grapes are not acceptable for wine making.
That forced growers to leave their grapes on the vine or sell them for vastly reduced prices. Some growers in southern Oregon were affected by cancellations.
No word at this point if senators Maria Cantwell or Patty Murray are seeking WHIP funding to help Washington growers.
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