Discussed ways state can better provide resources, help to LI farms and agriculture
Assemblyman Anthony Palumbo, who is running for state Senate in the 1st District, today joined retiring Senator Ken LaValle and Senate Republican Leader Rob Ortt in a listening tour with area famers, vintners, brewers and others to discuss ways the state can better support Long Island farms, agriculture, and aquaculture industries.
Hosted by Rob Carpenter, Administrative Director of the Long Island Farm Bureau, at Schmitt’s Family Farm in Riverhead, the event focused on the crucial role Suffolk County plays as home to the most wineries in New York (69) and the fourth-best region in the state for agricultural sales ($225 million).
“Despite the state’s burdensome regulations and the high cost of energy and transportation, Suffolk County’s farms and agricultural industries have managed to succeed,” Assemblyman Palumbo said. “The coronavirus pandemic has put our entire economy in real turmoil and our farming families are now facing more hardships and challenges than ever before.
“This meeting with our region’s agricultural leaders was crucial in finding out exactly what New York State can do to help our farms make it through this unprecedented time,” Palumbo continued. “As our next state Senator, I will bring their concerns and input to Albany and fight for the resources and support they need to continue growing and fueling Suffolk County and New York State’s economy.”
“Suffolk County is a statewide leader in agriculture and families across the state rely on our farms for quality produce and wine,” said Senator LaValle. “If our farms and agricultural industries struggle, so does our state economy and so do all our residents. In order to maintain jobs and keep our economy going, we must do everything we can to ensure the farms in Suffolk County have the tools they need to continue operating and producing at the levels we need.”
“Time and again we’ve seen how bad policies from Albany negatively impact farms across our state,” said Senate Republican Leader Ortt. “On Long Island, the farms are especially feeling the effects of the costly regulations, red tape and high cost of doing business. If we’re going to help our agricultural industries recover from the coronavirus pandemic, we must provide real support to farms like the ones right here in Suffolk County and remove all these restrictions.”
“Suffolk County remains among the top agricultural counties in production of farm products in New York State. We appreciate Senator Ortt traveling here to learn about our farms. As agriculture moves forward into the 21st century, we will need support from all citizens and leaders to be able to keep our farms growing,” said Bill Zalaker, President Long Island Farm Bureau.
“We are so pleased to be hosting Senator Ortt for his visit to Long Island. Agriculture on faces many unique challenges that we believe will make their way through the rest of New York in the coming years. These discussion will help our elected officials understand our concerns so they can be addressed, and farming in Suffolk County and in New York can thrive. Farmers are proud to be able to provide food and fiber for our residents of New York State,” said Rob Carpenter, director of Long Island Farm Bureau.