A bill being introduced in the state House on Tuesday would earmark $25 million in federal funding to aid meat-processing plants.
House Bill 1201 is sponsored by GOP Representatives Jeffrey Elmore of Wilkes County and Julia Howard of Davie County and appears to have bipartisan support.
The Winston-Salem Journal reports the $25 million aid package comes from federal CARES Act funding and is meant to help meat-processing plants add production capacity.
The bill states that the COVID-19 pandemic has seriously impacted the food supply chain and that the money is needed “to help small producers get their product to market.”
The legislation does not address worker-safety conditions, despite several coronavirus outbreaks at meat-processing facilities. At least 570 workers tested positive for COVID-19 at Tyson Foods' Wilkesboro plant.
The bill is set to be introduced in a House Agriculture committee meeting.