Assemblyman Scott Gray’s (R-Watertown) bill, A.5352, was held in committee by members of the Assembly Majority Conference for future consideration on Tuesday, April 26. The bill would provide milk dealers and agricultural food product transporters with electronic toll collection devices free of charge. Agricultural truckers are vitally important to the delivery and distribution of milk and other farm products across the state of New York. This legislation would grant farm product trucks to travel the state thruway system free of charge, allowing for farmers to produce more products for less money—a win for both farmers and consumers who will see decreased food costs.
“Our local farms are facing extinction and economic strife. This is dire, as New York’s agricultural industry is one of the backbones of this state. Agriculture is an essential part of New York state’s economy, and it plays a critical role in providing access to fresh, locally sourced food. To preserve this industry, we must lend a hand in support, which my bill aims to do by directly helping local farms and giving farmers much-needed assistance,” Gray said.
“Supporting local farms means increased food security. We want all New Yorkers to have access to healthy, locally sourced food that will lead to a productive and healthy life. Additionally, local agriculture is more environmentally friendly and sustainable and can meet the local economy’s needs. This measure would ultimately lower food costs for New Yorkers as the cost of locally grown food is typically much lower than the cost of food that has been shipped from another state or country.”
“I will continue to push for increased support for local farmers. If enacted, bill A.5352 would be one step in the right direction for getting them the assistance they deserve,” Gray concluded.