Opinion: New law will lead to fewer bee colonies, says former Morristown resident
Friday, June 15, 2018 - 6:11 am

To the Editor:

Dear Sen. Ritchie and Members of the NYS Senate Agricultural Committee: I was extremely upset to hear that you sponsored a bill (S.8274A) to require registration of bee colonies.

As I'm sure you know, bill S.6268 passed in May 2010 eliminating what then Senator Darrel Aubertine described as, "onerous" regulations on New York State beekeepers.

Now you want the onerous nature of government to return.

This does not help prosper our State's honeybee population.

In fact, it will do the opposite. Like bees, people need to be free to do what their nature dictates.

Beekeepers, by nature, are industrious, curious, ingenious and passionate about bees.

These qualities cannot be created or sustained by government, but they can be crushed by government.

If it's information you are after, beekeepers will voluntarily give quality data to institutions or government for the benefit of this remarkable creature.

Forcing them will give you nothing of value.

Just as forcing bee colonies in unnatural ways leads to their collapse, your bill will do the same to beekeepers. It will result in fewer colonies in New York as beekeepers give up in exasperation.

I suggest you turn to understanding why this one time colony, called New York State, is losing so many of it worker bee citizens.

Could it be too much intervention by government?

James M. Smithers

Formerly of Morristown