State Senator Hugh T. Farley (R, C - Schenectady) encourages parents and educators to promote local farms during New York Agriculture in the Classroom Day on March 21st.
According to Cornell University, this day was established in 1985 to educate youth, teachers, and consumers about agriculture and the food and fiber system.
"Agriculture is New York's number one industry," Senator Farley said. "Farms in our area make significant contributions to the economy of our communities, and farm families should be recognized. This day helps recognize the industry and the people who make it work."
Each year, volunteers go into classrooms and read agriculturally-themed books. This year's book is "Lily's Garden" by Deborah Kogan Ray. After reading the book, volunteers will talk to the students about agriculture.
Earlier this month, the State Senate Majority Conference voted to approve a new budget proposal that would provide $60 million in immediate financial assistance to dairy farmers across the State. The State Budget proposal approved by the Senate would establish a new Dairy Assistance Program within the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets. The program, which is similar to an initiative used in the State of Vermont, would pay eligible farmers the difference between target prices established by the Agriculture Commissioner and the combined Northeast Federal Order Statistical Uniform Price, plus the amount of the Milk Income Loss Contract X payment rate on a per-hundredweight basis. Dairy Producers would receive payments from the State in the form of a separate check based on pounds of milk produced during the 2006 calendar year. These payments would be made within 30 days of the proposal's enactment.
The Senate proposal is now subject to budget negotiations.
For more information on Agriculture in the Classroom, click here.