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Wednesday, January 7, 2015

State Sen. Rob Ortt talks with the Niagara County Farm
Bureau at the Winery at Marjim Manor. (CONTRIBUTED
APPLETON — The Niagara County Farm Bureau hosted its annual holiday gathering at The Winery at Marjim Manor.

Board members and their guests used the opportunity Dec. 18 to interacting with local political leaders. The board members present each introduced him or herself and describe their agricultural connection.

Niagara County Legislature Chairman Bill Ross attended, speaking briefly about the county budget and upcoming appointments to the Farmland Protection Board and the County Planning Board. Chairman Ross asked for Farm Bureau’s help in finding people for those positions.

Gerry Farnham represented Assemblywoman Jane Corwin, updating the group on the issues facing the Assembly that will affect agriculture in the future and the Assemblywoman’s interest in hearing from the farmers in her district.

Then Sen.-Elect Rob Ortt introduced himself to the group, expressing his interest in working with the agricultural community in his district. One of the committee assignments he requested was to be on the NYS
Senate Agricultural Committee so he can be a voice for WNY agriculture. He also signed the NY Wine pledge to only serve New York State Wines at his political functions. A number of local elected officials have signed the pledge as a way to get raise awareness of locally produced agriculture products.

County Farm President Jim Bittner was very pleased with the event.

“Anytime we have the opportunity to speak one-on-one with our elective representatives, we enjoy the opportunity. Most of them have no direct ties to agriculture, but realize the importance of agriculture to the local economy,"Bittner said. "We are pleased to announce that Assemblywoman Corwin will be receiving the New York Farm Bureau Circle of Friends Award for her steadfast support of agriculture. As Senator Ortt
begins his tenure, we appreciate the opportunity to get to know him. It is this kind of communication that will benefit the agricultural industry locally and across the state.”

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