SENATOR BONACIC ANNOUNCES “YOUNG FARMERS NY” PROGRAM
Program aims to fortify New York’s farming future
According to new data from the USDA Census of Agriculture, the average age of New York farmers is now 57.1 years. There are two farmers aged 65 and older for each one under age 35. This and other factors lead to farmland being lost forever to development. About 50,000 acres of farmland were lost in New York in each of the last five years, the federal agency reported.
Young Farmers NY addresses these problems in two ways, by helping to encourage more young people to consider a farming career, and by reducing financial roadblocks to starting a new agriculture business. The plan calls for a state investment of more than $30 million.
“Probably one of the hardest and most vital occupations in the state of New York is farming,” says Senator Bonacic. “Young farmers face many challenges such as mother nature, rising costs and unfair federal subsidies. It’s very difficult for farms to stay viable. I am proud to join my Senate Republican colleagues in support of the Young Farmers NY program, to provide education, tax relief and other support and incentives to encourage young people to stay involved in agriculture.”
Highlights of Young Farmers NY, which will be included in the Senate’s budget resolution, include:
- Loans, grants, and tax credits for the sale or lease of land and equipment, as well as for new technological innovations;
- Estate tax reforms to encourage farm preservation from generation to generation;
- Agricultural education efforts including an apprenticeship program, student loan forgiveness and increased funding for the in-school Future Farmers of America (FFA) program.
Click below to download the Young Farmers NY program information.