Agriculture is a critical part of the Upstate economy and a strong tradition I am committed to helping preserve. Farmers in Upstate New York and across the country work hard every day to provide a safe, affordable and abundant food supply, but many have faced hard times in this tough economy. Ensuring a strong agricultural community is truly a national security issue.
Dairy farmers in particular faced a historic crisis in 2009, when the bottom fell out of milk prices while middle class families continued to pay the same price at the store. As Upstate dairy farms struggle to recover from this crisis, I am working in Congress to end to the price instability that has caused such a large part of our economy to suffer for years. With farmers facing higher costs to grow their crops, feed their livestock and power their operations, we can do more to help.
I was recently named to the House Committee on Agriculture, giving the North Country a voice on the panel for the first time in more than one hundred years. As a member of this committee, I will continue to support initiatives that protect farmers and their families -- including meaningful change to milk pricing to level the playing field for producers. I will also work to increase exports of local produce and promote efforts to buy local, as well as promote rural development initiatives including wastewater treatment infrastructure improvements and broadband development.