February 01, 2010
The New York Farm Bureau has unveiled its 2009 Circle of Friends, to which 84 state legislators have been named recipients.
The organization presents the award each year to individual lawmakers who support New York agriculture and the Farm Bureau.
The award is based on each lawmaker's voting record "on issues of importance to New York agriculture and other evidence of legislative support, including sponsorship of bills the Farm Bureau has either supported, or opposed, throughout the legislative session," said Farm Bureau President Dean Norton.
The group said the award is not a political endorsement, but rather, legislators were chosen for their strong support of New York's local farms.
"I thank the Farm Bureau for their recognition of our conference's commitment to a 21st century agriculturally driven economy," said Smith.
Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb, R-Canandaigua, received the award for the tenth time. He says it is an honor and a testament to his "nonpartisan legislative record of supporting agriculture and family farming."
"Family farming is not only the backbone of New York's economy; it is a critical part of our state's cultural identity, a proud heritage passed from generation to generation," said Kolb.
According to the Farm Bureau, each Circle of Friends member has demonstrated they understand the importance of agriculture in their legislative district, and how the industry impacts the economy and the future of New York.
The Farm Bureau is one of New York state's largest farm advocacy organizations. Its mission is to "serve and strengthen agriculture." The group says it is a "non-governmental, volunteer organization financed and controlled by member families for the purpose of solving economic and public policy issues challenging the agricultural industry." About 30,000 families are members of the Farm Bureau.
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