New York Farm Bureau Statement on Senate Farm Labor Hearings

The following statement should be attributed to NYFB President David Fisher:

 “New York Farm Bureau is appreciative of Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Jen Metzger’s announcement that she will hold three joint hearings with Senate Labor Chair Jessica Ramos on the Farmworker Fair Labor Practices Act. Our organization has asked for a series of hearings upstate and on Long Island so lawmakers can hear directly from the people most affected by this legislation, farmers and their valued employees.

There is some agreement on aspects of the bill, including allowing for a day of rest for employees. However, enacting overtime beyond 40-hours a week and eight-hours a day would be a difficult financial burden to bear. Farms compete in a marketplace and can’t just pass along price increases to recoup their losses, especially in this difficult farm economy. The farm labor legislation as written will force farms out of business hurting the very workers the legislation is looking to assist. The senate hearings will allow members of all facets of the farm community to share their stories and concerns. It is important that urban lawmakers take rural New Yorkers’ livelihoods into consideration when voting on this legislation, and we commend Senator Metzger for leading the way for her constituents to be heard,” said David Fisher, New York Farm Bureau President.

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New York Farm Bureau is the State’s largest agricultural lobbying/trade organization. Its members and the public know the organization as “The Voice of New York Agriculture.” New York Farm Bureau is dedicated to solving the economic and public policy issues challenging the agricultural community.