Bill S4521-2013

Establishes the small farm disaster recovery grant program

Establishes the small farm disaster recovery grant program; provides grants for the purchase and replanting of crops destroyed by natural disaster.

Details

Actions

  • Jan 8, 2014: REFERRED TO AGRICULTURE
  • Apr 8, 2013: REFERRED TO AGRICULTURE

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S4521

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to establishing a small farm disaster recovery grant program

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS::

Section 1 amends the agriculture and markets law by adding a new section 325b, establishing the "Small Farm Disaster Recovery Grant Program," and defines a small farm to include only those that sell produce and have annual sales of one hundred thousand dollars or. less. The owner of any small farm may submit an application for a grant, the amount of which is to be determined by the Commissioner of Agriculture and Markets up to $10,000, awarded solely for the purpose of purchasing and replanting crops that have been destroyed by a natural disaster.

This Program shall be funded through annual appropriations of the Legislature or any other funds received by the state. Grants from the program shall only be awarded based upon the availability of funds.

Section 2 establishes an effective date of 180 days after becoming law.

JUSTIFICATION:: After a 70-year drop in numbers, small farms are beginning to make a comeback. For decades, the number of farmers has been shrinking as a share of the population, but the last Agricultural Census in 2007 showed a 4 percent increase in the number of farms. It is the first increase since 1920, and in many cases, young people and college graduates are joining in the return to the land. Behind this trend, to a large degree, is the appeal of locally grown and specialty produce, filling a niche that larger farms geared to national and international markets have left open for exploitation.

But while there has been an increase in promoting locally grown food, New York's small farmers still struggle to get a foothold in this promising new market.Regardless of size, all farmers are vulnerable to the forces of nature, whether they are excessive heat and drought, flooding, or. infestation,. For small, newly established farms, one such natural disaster. can mean the difference between failure and survival.

The small farm disaster recovery grant program will help cover the costs of replanting crops following a natural disaster or. pestilence. The grant can be up to $10,000 and help cover the cost seed or other expenses to replanting.

EXISTING LAW:: None.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:: New Bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:: $5 million.

EFFECTIVE DATE:: 180 days after becoming law.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 4521 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE April 8, 2013 ___________
Introduced by Sen. TKACZYK -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Agriculture AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to estab- lishing a small farm disaster recovery grant program THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new section 325-b to read as follows: S 325-B. SMALL FARM DISASTER RECOVERY GRANT PROGRAM. 1. THERE IS HERE- BY ESTABLISHED A SMALL FARM DISASTER RECOVERY GRANT PROGRAM. 2. THE PURPOSE OF THE PROGRAM IS TO PROVIDE FINANCIAL RELIEF TO SMALL FARMS THAT HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY NATURAL DISASTERS. 3. FOR PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, SMALL FARM SHALL ONLY INCLUDE FARMS THAT SELL PRODUCE AND HAVE ANNUAL SALES OF ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS OR LESS. 4. THE OWNER OF ANY SMALL FARM MAY SUBMIT AN APPLICATION FOR A GRANT PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION TO THE DEPARTMENT. GRANTS AWARDED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION SHALL BE USED SOLELY FOR THE PURPOSE OF PURCHASING AND REPLANTING CROPS THAT HAVE BEEN DESTROYED BY A NATURAL DISASTER. 5. THE COMMISSIONER, UPON REVIEW OF AN OWNER'S APPLICATION, SHALL DETERMINE IF THE OWNER IS ELIGIBLE FOR A GRANT PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION. THE COMMISSIONER SHALL MAKE THE DETERMINATION AS TO THE AMOUNT OF GRANT THE SMALL FARM OWNER NEEDS TO REBUILD HIS OR HER CROP, PROVIDED THAT SUCH AMOUNT SHALL IN NO EVENT EXCEED TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS. 6. THIS PROGRAM SHALL BE FUNDED THROUGH ANNUAL APPROPRIATIONS OF THE LEGISLATURE OR ANY OTHER FUNDS RECEIVED BY THE STATE FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION. GRANTS SHALL ONLY BE AWARDED BASED UPON THE AVAILABILITY OF FUNDS. S 2. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after it shall have become a law. Effective immediately, the commissioner of agriculture and markets may implement any rule or regulation and create the required application, which are necessary for the timely implementa- tion of this act on its effective date.

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