Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Report Details Work of Senate Agriculture Committee

State Sen. Patty Ritchie has released the annual report of the New York State Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture — which she chairs — detailing the activities of the committee in 2013. 

“Agriculture is our state’s biggest industry, and as chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee, it’s a priority for me to help support our hardworking farmers in an effort to help the industry grow,” Ritchie said.

“This report details the hard work done by the committee in 2013 and I would like to thank my colleagues, as well as the hardworking members of the agriculture industry whose input allowed us to take significant steps to foster further growth of this vital industry.”

In total, the committee reported 30 bills, five of which were signed into law and eight which are awaiting action by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. 

Highlights of the 2013 Legislative Session include approval of a 2 percent cap on annual increases in agricultural land assessments and adoption of a budget that significantly increased funding for key agricultural programs. 

The report was first released at a recent meeting of Ritchie’s Agriculture Advisory Council.  The group — which was formed in 2011 — is comprised of leaders in the industry from Central and Northern New York who are tasked with identifying challenges and opportunities for growth in the agriculture industry which can be passed onto the Senate Agriculture Committee. 

In addition to Ritchie’s annual report, the meeting also focused on cutting red tape to encourage younger people to pursue careers in farming

A copy of the annual report of the New York State Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture can be viewed on Ritchie’s website by visiting www.ritchie.nysenate.gov here. 

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