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NY Farm Bureau

April 27, 2020 - 3:23pm

Gov. Cuomo today pledged $25 million in emergency funding for food banks statewide, which have seen a surge in demand, including a 40 to 60 percent increase Upstate.

In addition, the governor also announced the "Nourish New York Initiative," to purchase food and products from Upstate farms for distribution to food banks across New York.

The state is also partnering with companies like Upstate Niagara, Cabot, Chobani and Dairy Famers of America, to buy excess milk, cheese and other dairy products for the state’s food banks.

From New York Farm Bureau President David Fisher:

“Governor Cuomo provided some much-needed good news today for the state’s farmers and our partners looking to feed fellow New Yorkers in need. Our organization has been advocating for food purchase programs at the state and national levels to address the surging demand for food assistance as well as to help alleviate oversupply issues that are burdening our farms because of the loss of markets in the food service industry. 

"More needs to be done to support all New Yorkers. No farmer wants to dispose of the food they produce, but few farms can process and package their raw commodities, like milk, into products that can be purchased or donated to those in need.

"We know out-of-state products like apples and potatoes are being purchased rather than supporting our farmers here in the state who themselves have been impacted by COVID-19. Today’s announcement will provide an additional pathway to move more nutritious, New York produced food from our farms to the dinner table, which will benefit everyone involved.

"Last year alone, New York’s farmers donated more than seven million pounds of food to regional food banks across the state through the Harvest for All program. Today’s proposal is a win-win and we look forward to continuing our partnership with Feeding New York State, our dairy cooperatives and marketers, and state officials to help feed more New Yorkers who are struggling right now.”

January 3, 2020 - 9:02am
posted by Billie Owens in business, agriculture, steve hawley, NY Farm Bureau.

Press release: 

Assemblyman Steve Hawley announced today that he has once again been named to the Farm Bureau "Circle of Friends" for his legislative support of agricultural and farming initiatives in 2019.

“I am honored to once again be named to the Circle of Friends and I thank the Farm Bureau for the great relationship and dialogue we have exercised over the years to do what’s best for our area’s producers,” Hawley said.

Hawley is the former owner and operator of Hawley Farms in Batavia, a longtime member of the Assembly Agriculture Committee and a leading opponent of the Farm Labor Bill, which allows unionization, mandatory time off and other labor restrictions for farm workers.

“The new farm labor regulations, which took effect yesterday, are an absolute deathblow to family farms across our state," Hawley said. "By choking our farmer’s labor supply and mandating drastic wage increases, we are threatening our farms’ livelihood and their ability to operate and succeed when they need laborers the most.

"I was proud to stand with farmers across the state in debating and voting against this bill when it came to the Assembly floor. New York City politicians who have probably never set foot on a farm should never be allowed to dictate how we operate.”

November 22, 2019 - 3:34pm

From the New York Farm Bureau:

The 2019 Market Basket Survey reveals a 15-percent price decrease for the classic Thanksgiving Day dinner compared to the price of last year's meal.

The average total price this year, which includes a 16-pound turkey, is $48.73. This is down over last year’s survey of $57.57, much of that attributed to a reduction in retail turkey prices.    

Turkey prices are about $1.27 per pound in New York State, down about 31 percent on average in this informal survey compared to 2018. Prices found by volunteer shoppers ranged from $.37/lb. to $2.49/lb. This price is comparable to the national average of $1.30 per pound.

As we move closer to Thanksgiving, turkey prices may continue to drop in the stores, reflecting sales in the final days before the holiday.

The New York numbers did show modest price increase in several categories including for a gallon of whole milk, Libby’s Pumpkin Pie Mix, and for many of the vegetables on the list.

This year’s survey also includes comparable numbers for an expanded menu that includes a four-pound ham, five-pound bag of russet potatoes and a package of frozen green beans. New York Farm Bureau included those in the survey for the first-time last year, reflecting more diversity in traditional Thanksgiving meals. When those prices are included, the total meal price jumps to $62.26.

The survey reveals that the classic meal remains affordable with a price point of under five dollars per person for a 10-person meal.

The affordability demonstrates that although farmers and ranchers are dealing with a variety of issues, consumers still benefit from lower retail prices, in part because the actual cost of the food – the portion paid to farmers – is only 8 cents of each dollar consumers spend on food at the store.

“It is good news for consumers that this year’s dinner is more affordable than last Thanksgiving," said Phyllis Couture, Chair of New York Farm Bureau’s Promotion and Education Committee. "Farmers have faced a difficult year with low commodity prices, weather challenges and trade disruptions, but because of their tenacity and hard work, Americans can still enjoy a nutritious dinner on their tables.

"This season, we should all give thanks to the farm families and their employees in New York who make it possible to feed ourselves.”

This survey is one of the responsibilities of the NYFB State Promotion and Education Committee, which also participates in the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Quarterly Market Basket Survey.

AFBF’s 34th annual informal national price survey of classic items found on the Thanksgiving Day dinner table indicates the average national cost of this year’s feast is $48.91, slightly more than New York's number. The national price for the expanded menu is $62.32.

More information on the national survey can be found at www.fb.org.

New York Farm Bureau’s volunteer shoppers sampled prices at 31 different supermarkets throughout the state trying to get the best prices available, but they did not use promotional coupons or special deals such as “buy one-get one free.”

The shopping list includes 15 common Thanksgiving food items ranging from turkey and rolls to stuffing and celery to pumpkin pie mix, enough to feed 10 people around the dinner table. An average for miscellaneous ingredients, like flour and butter, is also included.

The 2019 Thanksgiving survey displayed considerable price variation across the state as well as within the regions surveyed. No area had the highest or lowest in every category.

The best advice for shoppers is to compare prices to save money. The numbers in the chart below reflect the overall average of the volunteer shoppers, and this is not meant to be a true scientific survey, but rather a snapshot of what shoppers may find leading up to the holiday.

(New York Farm Bureau does not make any statistical claims about the survey data, but it is a useful gauge of price trends across New York and the country for shoppers who look to compare prices.)

 Market Basket Survey Comparison

 2019 Average Price/

 2018 Average Price

 Frozen, Self-Basting Turkey 16 lb.



 Herb-seasoned Cube Stuffing 14oz.



 Enriched Brown & Serve Rolls 12 oz./12 per  pkg.



 Gallon of Whole Milk



 Frozen Green Peas, 16 oz. pkg.



 Libby’s Pumpkin Pie Mix, 30 oz. can



 9 in. Frozen Pie Shell - 2 count



 Whipping Cream ½ pint carton



 Fresh Carrots per pound



 One Bunch of Celery



 Sweet Potatoes per pound



 Package of Fresh Cranberries



 Miscellaneous Ingredients



 Classic Thanksgiving Total






 Half Bone-in Ham, 4 lbs.



 Russet Potatoes, 5 lb. bag



 Frozen Green Beans, 16 oz. pkg



 Expanded Dinner Total Price



June 20, 2016 - 3:03pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in agriculture, NY Farm Bureau, business.

Press release:

New York Farm Bureau seeks to intervene in the farm labor lawsuit filed against the State of New York and Governor Cuomo. The grassroots farm organization will file a motion today in State Supreme Court of Albany County to gain intervenor status in a lawsuit filed by the New York Civil Liberties Union Foundation. The NYCLUF seeks to create a constitutional right for farmworkers to collectively bargain. The ultimate goal of NYFB with today’s motion is for the court to dismiss the lawsuit.

NYFB is taking this major step to defend farmers, who feel they have been abandoned by the Governor and the New York Attorney General. Both leaders have made public statements supporting the lawsuit and refusing to defend state law, despite its importance to agriculture in New York State.

NYFB believes it has the right to intervene because the interest of its members will not be represented by the defendants – the Governor and Attorney General - and the ability of the organization’s members to continue to produce food for New York residents would be harmed in the event the plaintiffs prevail in this action.

The motion reads, “Farm Bureau is uniquely situated to represent the varied perspectives of its member farms and to zealously defend the constitutionality of the challenged farm labor exemption.”

Farm Bureau believes that the exemption of farmworkers from collective bargaining rights is constitutional, and that the exclusion of farmworkers from the State Labor Relations Act law is based on decades of rational public policy and legal precedent that will be outlined in NYFB’s motions to intervene and to dismiss.

New York Farm Bureau believes that the legal precedent is clear. This is not a question for the courts, and the NYCLUF is attempting to make an end-run around the legislature, which has not approved collective bargaining for farmworkers despite numerous opportunities.

“New York Farm Bureau has a century-long record of defending the state’s family farms, and today’s action is one of the most important in our long history. If we can’t count on our state leaders to do the right thing in this case, we are prepared to stand up for our members in court to protect their rights,” said Dean Norton, New York Farm Bureau president.

February 25, 2015 - 11:45am
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, agriculture, elba, NY Farm Bureau.

Heading into the 2015 legislative session, the top priority for the New York Farm Bureau is immigration reform, said Dean Norton, bureau president, during a media conference call this morning.

The Elba resident is in Washington, D.C., this week meeting with members of New York's congressional delegation to represent farmers' interests.

"We need a stable, legal, reliable workforce," Norton said. "What we have now is broken. A stable workforce on our farms means a stable rural economy."

The Farm Bureau is calling on Washington to create a visa program or temporary worker program that will make it easier for farmers to hire and retain farm workers and not worry about all of their workers being taken away by immigration officials without notice.

"Everybody (in Washington) understands there's a problem, but neither side trusts and has faith in the other side to deal fairly," Norton said. "Both sides want to hold immigration as a political football."

The Farm Bureau is also looking for clarification from the FDA on food safety rules and there's been some progress on that front, Norton said.

Until recently, a small dairy farm with gross revenue of $500,000 that also grows a few strawberries for a fruit stand would face reams of regulations for the strawberry operation, but the FDA will start to apply those rules to $500,000 per crop, so the strawberry operation would not be covered in that circumstance.

Still a top priority for the Farm Bureau is the EPA's proposed rule change on what constitutes navigable waters. Farmers remain concerned that rule changes would bring into regulation small --- even very small -- bodies of water on farms.

"We continue to push the EPA for a clarification on the rules," Norton said. "Of the comments sent in by individuals, 58 percent of the comments ask the EPA to start over and become better partners with agriculture and come up with rules that are better for everybody."

Also on today's conferance call was Elisabeth Walters, director of national affairs, who said the Farm Bureau is paying close attention to the implementation of the 2014 Farm Bill, and is pushing for trade reform and reforms in tax structure to encourage more farmers to donate crops to local food pantries.

Norton said farmers want greater access to foreign markets, which means trade agreements, and the president should have greater authority to reach trade deals. 

Rep. Chris Collins has publicly opposed the idea, and Norton said he would be meeting with Collins today to discuss the issue with him.

"The reason we're in favor of it is that our trading partners want to deal with one person, not negotiate with 365," Norton said.

November 20, 2014 - 10:03pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in agriculture, immigration, NY Farm Bureau.

Press release: 

“President Obama’s executive action demonstrates there is a critical need to act on immigration reform, but it is not the long-term solution that New York’s farmers have called for to deal with the existing labor shortage. That action must come from Congress. Our farms must have both a flexible visa program to address the seasonal workforce needs that are required to pick fruits and vegetables, along with provisions that allow skilled workers already here to earn an adjustment in their status and remain working in New York.

This is a food security issue for our country. Without a legal, stable workforce willing to work in agriculture, our farms will continue to face a growing problem of being unable to provide enough healthy, safe food to our people. The alternative will be a greater reliance on foreign imports to feed ourselves,” said Dean Norton, New York Farm Bureau president.

May 14, 2013 - 3:16pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in agriculture, NY Farm Bureau, farm labor.

Like a bad dream that keeps recurring, New York farmers are once again fighting legislation that could put many of them out of business, or radically change the way they do business.

Assembly Democrats yesterday pushed through a farm labor bill similar to one defeated two years ago that would require overtime pay, require at least 24 consecutive hours off each week and allow for collective bargaining.

The bill passed the Assembly 82-53 and moves to the GOP-controlled Senate, where it was defeated two years ago, but the fight isn't over, said Dean Norton, president of the NY Farm Bureau.

"Anytime a law this bad for us is passed in one house with the closeness of the leadership in the Senate, we're concerned," Norton said. "We still need our farmers to contact their senators and let them know how they feel about it."

Many of the arguments being made in support of the bill are disingenuous, Norton said. Farmers already pay minimum wage or higher, provide housing and are covered by workers compensation.

"What we have now is Downstate legislators who have no experience with farms telling us how to run our farms and trying to put in protections that are already in place," Norton said.

New York is ranked 27th in farm production in the nation, but number two in labor costs. New York's labor costs are 56 percent higher than the national average.

New York farmers pay an average of $26 per acre in property taxes compared to a national average of $6 per acre.

Supporters of the bill like to compare New York to California, Norton noted, but California is the number one agriculture state in the nation and has a 10-month growing season. New York's season is five months at best.

As Assemblyman Steve Hawley said during yesterday's floor debate, "There's an old adage -- when sun shines you have to make the hay."

In New York, crops don't wait for the next eight-hour shift to ripen; Harvest time is harvest time.

But neither do workers work all year long. There's a short period of time for them to make the most money they can.

If New York institutes a 40-hour work week for farm labor, Norton said, many labors won't work fewer hours, they'll just get a second job because they know harvest time is the time to make money.

Hawley also argued that if working conditions are bad on a farm, a farmer will have a hard time finding and retaining workers. 

Below is a five-minute video produced by the Farm Bureau about the legislation.

Two years ago it was the work of North Country Democrat Darrel J. Aubertine, who used his power as chair of the agriculture committee to keep the bill from a floor vote. Aubertine was repaid by the GOP with a campaign to win his Senate seat. 

Without Aubertine, Norton still believes farmers have enough powerful friends in the Senate to defeat the bill, but it won't go down without a fight.

UPDATE: Here's Hawley's floor speech.

December 15, 2010 - 1:07pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, agriculture, elba, NY Farm Bureau, Dean Norton.

Here's a news release sent today from the NY Farm Bureau.

ALBANY -- Dean Norton, a dairy farmer and agricultural consultant from Elba, was re-elected as president of New York Farm Bureau, the state’s largest general farm organization, during the organization’s state annual meeting in Melville, Long Island.

dean_norton_farm.jpg“I am proud to have the opportunity to continue to lead this organization as we face a time of tremendous challenges in the agricultural community,” Norton said. “It’s an opportunity to make a difference in the ability of our farms to continue into the next generation.

"We face both unparalleled challenges and unparalleled opportunities, and need to find better ways, quickly, to maximize the connection between New York farmers and New York consumers, in order to keep the next generation farming.”

Norton is a senior agriculture consultant for Freed, Maxick & Battaglia in Batavia. His family dairy farm also manages a custom trucking operation for forage and commodity harvesting.

He has served as New York Farm Bureau’s president since 2008. His term lasts two years.

New York Farm Bureau is a statewide agricultural organization that represents nearly 30,000 member families.

Photo: File photo of Dean Norton.

August 6, 2010 - 1:55pm
posted by Billie Owens in agriculture, Ranzenhofer, NY Farm Bureau.

We received this news release today from Dean Norton, president of the New York Farm Bureau.

Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer last week cast a vote in favor of our local family farmers. He voted to defeat the Omnibus Farmworker Labor bill that threatened to devastate agriculture as we know it here in Upstate New York.

In turn, the bill would have had an equal impact on the overall local economy. It would have dramatically increased our costs and made it impossible for us to keep producing food in this area.

Sen. Ranzenhofer recognized that Albany should be coming up with ways to help agriculture, not hinder it. Like so many times before, Sen. Ranzenhofer cast a vote in favor of our local farmers and the rural economy.

New York Farm Bureau is grateful for the senator's leadership and looks forward to the continued support of our local farmers.

January 13, 2010 - 2:52pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, agriculture, NY Farm Bureau.

The American Farm Bureau is putting PETA and other animal rights groups on notice -- they're not going to let these groups define their industry and spread misinformation about their farms any longer.

That was the message from Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman at the group's annual convention last week.

dean_norton_farm.jpgBatavian Dean Norton, president of the New York Farm Bureau, was there and he said he agrees with Stallman's message.

At a time when New York farmers are facing dire economic consequences from lower commodity prices, high production costs, climate change legislation and proposed migrant worker reforms, the animal rights activists and others who would spread misinformation about farmers are going to face a more energized opposition, Norton said.

"In the current political environment, rallies and campaigns get more attention than just sitting down in a room and discussing issues," Norton said. "That's why we're going to get out and rally and campaign, so we can get our message out."

About 99 percent of America's farms are family owned, Norton said, so the idea that there are these large corporate farms engaged in factory farm is really a myth.

"Sure there are bad apples," Norton said. "There are bad apples in every bunch, but people never look at the good stuff. They only look at the bad stuff. Only the bad stuff makes the news."

Norton said he is particularly concerned about climate change treaties known as "cap and trade."

Cap and trade, Norton said, will drive up costs for American farmers by $5 billion, cost to consumers by $7 billion and reduce agriculture profits by $2 billion, based on a study commissioned by the American Farm Bureau.

"American farmers have fed and clothed American families for more than 200 years and we're the leaders in the world in providing food and fiber," Norton said. "We're not going to let people not part of our industry tell us how to raise our animals healthy. We're already doing that."

Photo: File photo of Dean Norton

June 9, 2009 - 5:55pm
posted by Steve Hawley in dairy, steve hawley, farm, NY Farm Bureau.





Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R, I, C – Batavia) today joined Assembly Minority Leader Brian M. Kolb (R, C, I – Canandaigua), bipartisan members of the State Legislature, representatives from the State Department of Agriculture and Markets, New York Farm Bureau, New York Grange, Northeast Dairy Foods, and American Dairy Association, along with local New York State farmers in celebration and recognition of New York State Dairy Day. 


Additionally, the coalition discussed the negative impacts of Assembly Bill 1867, dubbed the “Farm Death Bill” and called on the State Senate and Governor to “vote no” on the bill, which was passed by the Assembly last evening.


Hawley stated, “I was a third generation family farmer and I know firsthand how difficult it is to run a farm successfully.  Right now farmers are losing money on every gallon of milk, every pound of grain, because production costs here are so high.  We are in the midst of one of the worst recessions in decades and now is not the time to add additional burdens on our farmers.”


The Assemblyman continued, “This onerous bill, if passed into law, will be the death of New York State’s farms.  Farming is not just a job, it is a way of life and I want to keep that quality of life around for many more generations.”


June 8, 2009 - 7:26pm
posted by Steve Hawley in steve hawley, farm bureau, farmers, NY Farm Bureau.




Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R, I, C – Batavia) today voted against the Farmworkers Omnibus Labor Standards Bill, dubbed the “Farm Death Bill.”  By imposing unnecessary and expensive mandates on farmers, the cost of the bill, ranging in the thousands, depending on farm size, has the potential to put farms and agribusinesses across the state out of business.


“My family has a long tradition of farming.  Our Western New York community’s backbone is in agriculture – both socially and financially.  This bill will be the final nail in the coffin for New York State agriculture and more people will suffer the consequences of our farms closing than just the farmers or farm workers.  The price of food will skyrocket and further hurt hard-working middle-America families that are just squeezing by right now.  This bill is a disaster for the state economy,” said Hawley, who is a former crop and hog farmer and Genesee County Farm Bureau President.


Hawley debated the bill on the floor, citing the fact that from April 2008 to April 2009, milk prices received by farmers dropped from $18.20 per 100 weight to $11.80; corn from $5.86 to $3.98; and wheat from $9.20 to $4.24.  These price drops signify that farmers in New York State are already struggling to make ends meet.  This is compounded by production costs, which for milk are currently around $14 per 100 weight, meaning that farmers are already losing money on their products.  Additionally, New York State has lost over 2,000 farms over the last decade.  Hawley argued that the new provisions that the bill mandates will push struggling farms over the edge and force more farms, especially smaller operations, to permanently close.


During the debate, Hawley also commented on the comparison of New York State’s agriculture to that of California.  He stated, “In California, they have farms that operate year-round.  Their agricultural industry is 12 months a year and operates on a much larger scale.  Here, in New York, many farms only operate 1 to 2 months per year and during these months everything from planting to harvesting happens.”


Hawley, who also serves as a member of the Assembly Agriculture Committee, was among the first legislators to oppose the Farm Death Bill, or Assembly Bill 1867.  With the entire bipartisan Assembly Agriculture Committee, he sent a formal letter of opposition to Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver outlining the devastating effects of the bill.  Hawley has worked with New York Farm Bureau President Dean Norton, a former dairy farmer in Batavia, local farmers and a bipartisan delegation of state legislators, to openly and publicly oppose the bill as well as to wage a public campaign urging New Yorkers to contact the sponsors of the bill in opposition.


Despite this, the Assembly passed the legislation by a vote of 85 to 57.  Hawley stated, “Tomorrow, the State Legislature is celebrating their annual ‘Dairy Day,’ a day when dairy farmers and agribusinesses come from all over the state to be lauded by legislators as the ‘pride of New York.’ How hypocritical for lawmakers to, on the eve of this day, pass the bill that will kill these businesses.  Once our farms close up shop, they will be closed forever.”




June 2, 2009 - 7:57am
posted by Howard B. Owens in agriculture, Albany, NY Farm Bureau, Dean Norton.

farm bureau.JPG

Farm Bureau President Dean Norton tells the Watertown Daily Times that a bill that would raise farm worker wages isn't necessary and will do more harm than good, for farmers and workers.

"If passed, this bill would put our industry into a major tailspin and wreck the already struggling upstate and Long Island economy," said Dean Norton, President of New York Farm Bureau and a Batavia dairy farmer.

Mr. Norton spoke at a press conference in Albany on Monday afternoon.

"The tragic irony of the situation is that the sponsors are primarily from New York City or urban areas, and most of them have never been on a farm," Mr. Norton said. "If the bill's sponsors spent some time understanding the issue, talking to farmers and farm workers, they would know that the bill doesn't actually benefit the worker."

The bill is scheduled for an Assembly floor vote this week and could increase farm costs by $200 million per year.

Sen. Catharine M. Young is critical of the legislative leadership for letting the bill get this far, because if it goes to a floor vote, there may be hard-to-resist pressure on many members to support it.

Sen. Catharine M. Young, R-Olean, said, "The only way to stop it is for it never to come to the floor for a vote."

She is the ranking minority member on the Agriculture Committee. She called the Times and criticized Sen. Aubertine for not quashing the bill in committee by talking to Majority Leader Malcolm A. Smith. Mr. Aubertine, however, is not on the committee that will send the bill to the floor.

She said union special interests are driving the bill.

"If it is allowed to come to the floor, people are going to have to be held accountable," she said. "There's a chance it will pass and it will be devastating for the upstate economy."

The Farm Bureau argues that the bill, besides being burdensome, is unnecessary:

Among other provisions, the omnibus bill would also allow farm workers to unionize, mandate one day off per week for farm workers, call on farms to provide unemployment insurance, workers compensation and disability insurance for injuries off the job.

According to the Farm Bureau, farm workers already have stronger protections in the state than under federal law. Medium- and large-sized farms already provide unemployment insurance. All farms follow a state sanitary code for migrant and seasonal housing that is stricter than the federal code.

Farms provide free housing, transportation and utilities for their workers. New York is one of two states with a housing program for farm workers. Farm employees also have work agreements for the type of work, wages, work hours, pay period, benefits and vacation and other arrangements.

Assemblyman Steve Hawley opposes the bill and posted a column alerting the public to the pending legislation last week.

Pictured above are Hawley and members of the Farm Bureau. The picture was submitted this morning by Hawley's office.

UPDATE: Additional coverage from the D&C, which quotes a proponent of the bill:

"We deserve to have a day of rest, to be paid overtime and to join a union if we choose — just like anyone else," farm worker Salvador Solis said in a news release from the Justice for Farmworkers group, which is pushing the bill.

June 1, 2009 - 7:39pm
posted by Steve Hawley in steve hawley, farm bureau, farm, NY Farm Bureau.






Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R, I, C – Batavia) joined New York Farm Bureau President and Batavia dairy farmer Dean Norton, bipartisan state legislators, farmers and agriculturalists from across the state at a press conference today opposing Assembly Bill 1867, the Farmworkers Omnibus Labor Standards Bill.


As a former crop and hog farmer and Genesee County Farm Bureau President and as a current member of the Assembly Agriculture Committee, Hawley joined the group in calling on the three legislative leaders to halt action on the bill, stating, “Albany has a real opportunity to help businesses, yet here we go again.  Albany seems to do all it can to discourage business: whether it be raising property taxes, imposing expensive and unnecessary mandates, or raising the cost of business.  As a third generation family farmer, I have seen first-hand that our children are leaving the state.  This impact is felt greatest on our farms.  This legislation adds to that burden for farmers and agri-business owners.  Albany needs to learn how to say to businesses ‘we want you here’ and passing meaningful legislation to attract and retain businesses for our future.”




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