Newly elected state Sen. Jen Metzger named chair of Senate Agriculture Committee
State Senator-elect Jen Metzger (D-42) has been named chair of the New York State Senate Agriculture Committee.
ALBANY — State Senator-elect Jen Metzger (D-42) has been named chair of the New York State Senate Agriculture Committee. “Farms and agricultural businesses are a vital part of our economy and our beautiful region, and I'm committed to helping them thrive,” Metzger said in the press release detailing the appointment. “These primarily small family businesses have to work against an industry and regulatory framework that advantages big agriculture interests. "In this and every other area," Metzger added, "I will fight to level the playing field for families and small businesses in New York.” The Senate Agriculture Committee plays a critical role in ensuring the health and economic sustainability of our rural communities, regional tourism, and rural culture. As one of only two Senators in the majority representing rural counties, Metzger has made being a strong voice for rural New York central to her upcoming legislative agenda. “Farms and agribusinesses are not just an integral part of the Hudson Valley and Catskills economy, but they also are a central part of the upstate culture,” said Chris Kelder, co-owner of Kelder’s Farm and Hudson Valley Representative to the New York Farm Bureau Board of Directors. “We know that Jen understands our needs and will advocate for legislation to help our family farms thrive.” The Senate Agriculture Committee is likely to have a busy agenda in 2019 with issues including dairy farm sustainability, looking at the impacts of regulations on small farms, and the state-wide impacts of federal legalization of hemp cultivation.