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Gillibrand holds roundtable with farmers, producers in Columbia County

March 03, 2017 05:27 PM

VALATIE - Senator Kirsten Gillibrand was in Columbia County Friday morning, hosting a roundtable discussion with local farmers and producers.

The concerns brought up and debated at the 70-year-old Ooms & Sons Dairy Farm in Valatie were very similar to issues that all Americans seem to be discussing right now.

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Senator Gillibrand says she held the roundtable to listen to what the farmers and producers have to say and to learn more about the challenges they’re facing and what she can do in Washington to assist.

The topics brought up at the discussion could have been taken from any constituent meeting these days.  Just like so many other Americans, and New Yorkers, farmers and producers are concerned about trade, immigration, the estate tax – how that affects land being passed on to future generations - and higher education geared torward agriculture.  Any changes at the Federal level to those crucial topics can seriously impact farms.

"We need to listen to folks in our communities when we are addressing and speaking out against some of President Trump’s most extreme agenda," explained Gillibrand.

A farming forum that attendees hope will translate to action in D.C.

"Agriculture in Washington is more regional than party partisanship.  It depends onwhat you are growing and what you are doing," explains Eric Ooms, whose family has owned the Valatie farm where Gillibrand's event was held since the 1950s.

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WNYT Staff

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