Farmers from Madrid, Canton, Nicholville named to panel to advise Rep. Owens
Friday, May 10, 2013 - 3:20 pm

Three St. Lawrence County farmers have been appointed to a panel to advise Rep. Bill Owens on agricultural policy.

The appointees are David Fisher, a Madrid dairy farmer who represents this area on the Farm Bureau state board; Canton farmer Andy Hurlbut, who raises crops and beef; and Aaron Stauffer, dairy farmer from Nicolville.

They will be part of a panel of about 40 people involved in agriculture from around the 21st Congressional District intended to help advise Congressman Owens on the needs of New York farmers and provide a local perspective on farm policy for his work in Washington.

“Local input is invaluable to my ability to represent the district,” said Owens. “This is another way to stay in touch with concerns on the ground and ensure the needs of a large and diverse farm district are being addressed. I appreciate the willingness of New York farm leaders to serve on my advisory committee and look forward to discussing agricultural issues with them in the near future.”

Owens will hold the first meeting via conference call with the group next week where he will give them an update on the Farm Bill’s progress in Washington and get their initial input on what they would like to see in the Farm Bill.

Owens, who served on the House Agriculture Committee in the 112th Congress, introduced a series of bills this year related to farm issues, including legislation to reduce trade barriers for apple exports to Canada, to increase access to credit for farmers, to boost the New York maple industry and a bill to improve access to agricultural labor.

This Agricultural Advisory Committee is preliminary, and more members will be added layer, a statement from the congressman said.